Quirks of Human Anatomy: An Evo-Devo Look at the Human Body

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Overview

With the emergence of the new field of evolutionary developmental biology we are witnessing a renaissance of Darwin's insights 150 years after his Origin of Species. Thus far, the exciting findings from "evo-devo" have only been trickling into college courses and into the domain of non-specialists. With its focus on the human organism, Quirks of Human Anatomy opens the floodgates by stating the arguments of evo-devo in plain English, and by offering a cornucopia of interesting case studies and examples. Its didactic value is enhanced by 24 schematic diagrams that integrate a host of disparate observations, by its Socratic question-and-answer format, and by its unprecedented compilation of the literature. By framing the "hows" of development in terms of the "whys" of evolution, it lets readers probe the deepest questions of biology. Readers will find the book not only educational but also enjoyable, as it revels in the fun of scientific exploration.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521518482
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 5/29/2009
  • Pages: 280
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Dr Lewis I. Held earned his B.S in Life Sciences from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1973. On completion of his Ph.D. in molecular biology from the University of California, Berkeley in 1977, he became a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of California, Irvine's Developmental Biology Center from 1977 to 1980. Following a 6-year period as an Assistant Professional Research Biologist at the University of California, Irvine, he joined Texas Tech University as an Associate Professor of Biology in 1987. He was awarded the President's Excellence in Teaching Medal from Texas Tech University in 1995 and is the author of Models for Embryonic Periodicity and Imaginal Discs: The Genetic and Cellular Logic of Pattern Formation.

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Table of Contents

1. Background; 2. Symmetry and asymmetry; 3. Mysteries of the midline; 4. Merism and modularity; 5. Sexual dimorphisms; 6. Silly, stupid, and dangerous quirks; 7. Mind and brain.

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