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Anat Embryol (Berl). 2006 Dec;211 Suppl 1:3-8. Epub 2006 Sep 21.

On periodicity and directionality of somitogenesis.

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  • 1Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Kansas City, MO 64110, USA.


It is currently thought that the mechanism underlying somitogenesis is linked to a molecular oscillator, the segmentation clock, and to gradients of signaling molecules within the paraxial mesoderm. Here, we review the current picture of this segmentation clock and gradients, and use this knowledge to critically ask: What is the basis for periodicity and directionality of somitogenesis?

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