The International Journal of Developmental Biology

Int. J. Dev. Biol. 50: 79 - 80 (2006)

Vol 50, Issue 2-3

Special Issue: Developmental Morphodynamics

Preface. Developmental Morphodynamics - bridging the gap between the genome and embryo physics

Open Access | Published: 15 February 2006

Lev V. Beloussov and Richard Gordon

Moscow, Russia and Winnipeg, Canada


We, the Guest Editors of this Special Issue of The International Journal of Developmental Biology, are two older embryologists, who are trying to bridge the current chasm between Entwicklungsmechanic, the developmental mechanics of our embryogenesis forefathers, and the modern movement of molecular developmental biology. Our rallying cry is that of Wilhelm His: "To think that heredity will build organic beings without mechanical means is a piece of unscientific mysticism" (His, 1888). Until recently, this claim appeared to us to fall on the somewhat deaf ears of molecular developmental biologists. Yet, the world is still one, and both physics and chemistry obviously have their place in embryogenesis. Indeed, at the molecular level, membrane proteins which are mechanoreceptors and motor molecules may begin to point the way. Here, we and our colleagues will make the case for a more equitable consideration of molecules and mechanics.

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