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Cell. 2011 Mar 18;144(6):970-85. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2011.02.017.

Evolution of gene regulatory networks controlling body plan development.

Author information

1
Division of Biology 156-29, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA. ipeter@caltech.edu

Abstract

Evolutionary change in animal morphology results from alteration of the functional organization of the gene regulatory networks (GRNs) that control development of the body plan. A major mechanism of evolutionary change in GRN structure is alteration of cis-regulatory modules that determine regulatory gene expression. Here we consider the causes and consequences of GRN evolution. Although some GRN subcircuits are of great antiquity, other aspects are highly flexible and thus in any given genome more recent. This mosaic view of the evolution of GRN structure explains major aspects of evolutionary process, such as hierarchical phylogeny and discontinuities of paleontological change.

PMID:
21414487
PMCID:
PMC3076009
DOI:
10.1016/j.cell.2011.02.017
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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