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Endless Forms Most Beaut Pa



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"A beautiful and very important book."--Lewis Wolpert,American Scientist For over a century, opening the black box of embryonic development was the holy grail of biology. Evo Devo--Evolutionary Developmental Biology--is the new science that has finally cracked open the box. Within the pages of his rich and riveting book, Sean B. Carroll explains how we are discovering that complex life is ironically much simpler than anyone ever expected. Perhaps the most surprising finding of Evo Devo is the discovery that a small number of primitive genes led to the formation of fundamental organs and appendagesin all animal forms. The gene that causes humans to form arms and legs is the same gene that causes birds and insects to form wings, and fish to form fins; similarly, one ancient gene has led to the creation of eyes across the animal kingdom. Changes in the way this ancient tool kit of genes is used have created all the diversity that surrounds us. Sean Carroll is the ideal author to lead the curious on this intellectual adventure--he is the acknowledged leader of the field, and his seminal discoveries have been featured inTimeandThe New York Times.16 pages of color and 100 black-and-white illustrations.

Table of Contents

Preface: Revolution #3 ix
Introduction: Butterflies, Zebras, and Embryos 1(16)
Part I The Making of Animals
1 Animal Architecture: Modern Forms, Ancient Designs
2 Monsters, Mutants, and Master Genes
3 From E. coli to Elephants
4 Making Babies: 25,000 Genes, Some Assembly Required
5 The Dark Matter of the Genome: Operating Instructions for the Tool Kit
Part II Fossils, Genes, and the Making of Animal Diversity
6 The Big Bang of Animal Evolution
7 Little Bangs: Wings and Other Revolutionary Inventions
8 How the Butterfly Got Its Spots
9 Paint It Black
10 A Beautiful Mind: The Making of Homo sapiens
11 Endless Forms Most Beautiful
Sources and Further Reading 307(22)
Acknowledgments 329(4)
Index 333

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