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Tinkering: The Microevolution of Development

Gregory R. Bock (Editor), Jamie A. Goode (Editor)
ISBN: 978-0-470-03429-3
300 pages
July 2007
Tinkering: The Microevolution of Development (0470034297) cover image


Much recent research in evolutionary developmental biology has focused on the origin of new body plans. However, most evolutionary change at the population and species level consists of tinkering: small-scale alterations in developmental pathways within a single body plan. Such microevolutionary events have been well studied on a population genetic level and from the perspective of adaptive phenotypic evolution, but their developmental mechanisms remain poorly studied.

This book explores both theoretical and practical issues of tinkering. It features a wide range of perspectives to address several fundamental questions. How does tinkering occur developmentally, and how is it manifested phenotypically? Are the developmental mechanisms by which tinkering occur different from those that underlie larger evolutionary changes? What are the developmental constraints on tinkering? And how do we test hypotheses about microevolutionary shifts in development from the fossil record?

With contributions from experts in a range of fields, this fascinating book makes exciting reading for anyone studying evolution, developmental biology or genetics.

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Table of Contents

Symposium on Tinkering: the microevolution of development, held at the Novartis Foundation, London, 11-13 July 2006.

Editors: Gregory Bock (Organizer) and Jamie Goode.

This symposium is based on a proposal made by Brian Hall.

Daniel E. Lieberman The evolutionary developmental biology of tinkering: an introduction to the challenge.

Manfred D. Laubichler Tinkering: a conceptual and historical evaluation

Rudolf A. Raff and Elizabeth C. Raff Tinkering: new embryos from old-rapidly and cheaply.

James M. Cheverud The relationship between development and evolution through heritable variation.

Adam S. Wilkins Genetic networks as transmitting and amplifying devices for natural genetic tinkering.

Paul M. Brakefield Butterfly eyespot patterns and how evolutionary tinkering yields diversity.

General discussion I.

Günter P. Wagner and Anna Marie Pyle Tinkering with transcription factor proteins: the role of transcription factor adaptation in developmental evolution.

Denis Duboule, Basile Tarchini, Jozsef Zàkàny and Marie Kmita Tinkering with constraints in the evolution of the vertebrate limb anterior-posterior polarity.

Irma Thesleff, Elina Järvinen and Marika Suomalainen Affecting tooth morphology and renewal by fine-tuning the signals mediating cell and tissue interactions.

General discussion II.

Benedikt Hallgrimsson, Daniel E. Lieberman, Nathan M. Young, Trish Parsons and Steven Wat Evolution of covariance in the mammalian skull.

David L. Stern The developmental genetics of microevolution.

Jukka Jernvall and Isaac Salazar-Ciudad The economy of tinkering mammalian teeth.

Michael A. Bell, Kaitlyn E. Ellis and Howard I. Sirotkin Pelvic skeleton reduction and Pitx1 expression in threespine stickleback populations.

Michael I. Coates, Marcello Ruta and Peter J. Wagner Using patterns of fin and limb phylogeny to test developmental-evolutionary scenarios.

Rebecca R. Ackermann Craniofacial variation and developmental divergence in primate and human evolution.

Contributor Index.

Subject Index.

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Author Information

The Novartis Foundation is an international scientific and educational charity which promotes the study and general knowledge of science and in particular encourages international co-operation in scientific research.

Chair: DANIEL LIEBERMAN, Harvard University, Cambridge, USA

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