How the Snake Lost its Legs: Curious Tales From The Frontier Of Evo-Devo

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How did the zebra really get its stripes, and the giraffe its long neck? What is the science behind camel humps, leopard spots, and other animal oddities? Such questions have fascinated us for centuries, but the expanding field of evo-devo (evolutionary developmental biology) is now providing, for the first time, a wealth of insights and answers. Taking inspiration from Kipling's 'Just So Stories', this book weaves emerging insights from evo-devo into a narrative that provides startling explanations for the origin and evolution of traits across the animal kingdom. Held's unique and engaging style makes this narrative both enlightening and entertaining, guiding students and researchers through even complex concepts and encouraging a fuller understanding of the latest developments in the field. The first five chapters cover the first bilaterally symmetric animals, flies, butterflies, snakes, and cheetahs. A final chapter surveys recent results about a menagerie of other animals.

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Book Description:

Taking inspiration from Kipling's 'Just So Stories', this book explores emerging insights from evo-devo to explain the science behind tiger stripes, camel humps, and many other fascinating animal traits. Held's unique and engaging style makes this narrative both enlightening and entertaining, guiding students and researchers through even complex concepts.

About the Author:

Lewis I. Held, Jr is Associate Professor of Biology at Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas, USA. He has taught developmental biology and human embryology to pre-medical students for 27 years, and received the 2010 Professing Excellence Award and the 1995 President's Excellence in Teaching Medal (Texas Tech University). He is also the author of Quirks of Human Anatomy (Cambridge, 2009), Imaginal Discs (Cambridge, 2002) and Models for Embryonic Periodicity (1992).

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9781107030442: How the Snake Lost its Legs: Curious Tales from the Frontier of Evo-Devo

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press, 2014
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