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Nature. 2003 May 15;423(6937):332-6.

Developmental regulation of the growth plate.

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  • 1Endocrine Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02114-2696, USA.


Vertebrates do not look like jellyfish because the bones of their skeletons are levers that allow movement and protect vital organs. Bones come in an enormous variety of shapes and sizes to accomplish these goals, but, with few exceptions, use one process--endochondral bone formation--to generate the skeleton. The past few years have seen an enormous increase in understanding of the signalling pathways and the transcription factors that control endochondral bone development.

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