Many kinds of living organisms regrow appendages that are crushed or torn off in the mishaps of an active life. People have scarcely any abilities of this sort, a fact which contributes to their jealous curiosity about the mechanisms of regeneration in more resilient organisms. This curiosity runs deeper than mere jealousy would motivate because regeneration in many ways resembles the initial normal development of an animal’s structures. Normal development plus regeneration, collectively called morphogenesis, presumably operates by some general rules that we might at least elucidate empirically as a prelude to ferreting out deeper mechanisms. Yet for all the imaginative and meticulous efforts of at least four generations of developmental biologists, few general rules have stood the test of time. If principles of widespread applicability exist, they remain tantalizing obscure.
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- Growth and Regeneration
Arthur T. Winfree
- Springer Berlin Heidelberg
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