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Annu Rev Cell Dev Biol. 1999;15:393-410.

Vertebrate endoderm development.

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Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138, USA.


Endoderm, one of the three principal germ layers, contributes to all organs of the alimentary tract. For simplicity, this review divides formation of endodermal organs into four fundamental steps: (a) formation of endoderm during gastrulation, (b) morphogenesis of a gut tube from a sheet of cells, (c) budding of organ domains from the tube, and (d) differentiation of organ-specific cell types within the growing buds. We discuss possible mechanisms that regulate how undifferentiated endoderm becomes specified into a myriad of cell types that populate the respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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