Developmental biology is one of the fastest growing and exciting areas in the life sciences. Although still reputed to be rather dull in some quarters, it is becoming a central organizing discipline in biology, relating cell and molecular biology, anatomy, ecology, evolution, and medicine to each other. This is the result of the molecular explosion and other scientific breakthroughs in the last about fifteen years.
Developmental biology has been transformed form a field in which ingenious manipulative experiments generated speculations about unobservable underlying causes, such as gradients and prepatterns, to one in which we have a very detailed knowledge of what is actually going on at the molecular and cellular level.
The present book attempts to convey the essence of this revolution to the lay reader. The book will be appropriate for courses that emphasize cellular and molecular aspects of development as well as those that focus on descriptive embryology and morphogenesis.
However, it will be particularly useful for those courses. That cover both the molecular and descriptive aspects of development. It will be of great interest to those students and biologists who have only a superficial knowledge of the subject.