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Mechanisms explaining positional diversity of the hindlimb in tetrapod evolution

(Nagoya University) Elucidating how body parts in their earliest recognizable form are assembled in tetrapods during development is essential for understanding the nature of morphological evolution. Nagoya University researchers found in eight tetrapod species that the position of the sacral vertebrae and the hindlimbs is determined by the initiation timing of Gdf11 gene expression.
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In the evolution of tetrapods, the position of the hindlimb has diversified along with the vertebral formula, which is the number of small bones forming the vertebra. Tetrapods, as the name implies, are species that have four feet. ...

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