BIOL 346

Developmental Biology Course Page

This course will be offered in Spring 2017

Spring 2017 Syllabus (pdf)

Human embryo

Book: This book is required, but you don't need to get the loose leaf version

Course Description: This course will give you some basic understanding about the morphological changes that occur during the development of select animals, as well as the underlying molecular events that produce those morphological changes.

Learning Outcomes: When you have completed this course you will be able to describe, compare, and contrast the events of early development and morphogenesis in some animals. You will be able to give the details of the molecular mechanisms of cell-cell, cell-matrix, and tissue interactions during development. You will be able to explain how the common genetic makeup shared by all cells comprising an organism can be regulated to produce a large variety of cell types, and you will be able to explain how changes in developmental programs result in evolutionary change at the gross morphological level.


Course Resources (will gradually be updated for Spring 2017)

Aristotle, William Harvey, Marcello Malpighi; epigenesis and preformation (Warning! These readings are very philosophical) - reading 1, reading 2
Karl Ernst von Baer and Ernst Haeckel -  reading 3, reading 4

Slides 1    Slides 2 
Article on chimaric woman who wasn't genetically related to her sons    Another one
Transgenic organisms and knockouts - reading 1, reading 2
An example of a biotech company providing the tools discussed in lecture
Mircoarrays reading 3 reading 4        
In situ hybridization reading 5

Cell Communication
Cadherins reading 1
Paracrine factors reading 2   

Differential Gene Expression
Slides 1    Slides 2    Slides 3     
Wikipedia summary - also use links within to get more info

Primordial germ cell migration movie1    movie2
Meiosis reading 1
Gametogenesis (simple) 2, 3

Sea Urchin reading 1, reading 2
Mammal reading 3
reading 4    

reading 1, reading 2

reading 1, reading 2 , reading 3

Extraembryonic Membranes


Germ Layer Derivatives
Slides Ectoderm   Mesoderm+Endoderm

Tetrapod Limb Development
reading 1, Example of a human with an extra limb, possibly due to a split limb field reading 2

Medical Implications of Developmental Biology
Slides 1  Slides 2 
Endocrine disruptors reading 1
Bisphenol A reading 2
Therapeutic cloning reading 3
Induced pluripotent stem cells reading 4

What is evo-devo? reading 1 , reading 2   , reading 3   
Be careful in your reading, if you search for macroevolutionary change. "Macroevolution" is one of the buzzwords used by creationists and searching for this term brings up many creationist websites (e.g. talkorigins and icr=institute for creation research)


Movies, Animations and Lab Resources:
RU Nijmegen embryology web portal

Sea urchin development - click here and here and here

Frog development - click here, here, here, and here

Zebrafish development - click here

Chick primitive streak and gastrulation - click here, here     Chick development here  

Mammalian embryology - gastrulation here,  embryos  here
Human embryology - click here, here and here