Sunday, 20 June 2010

Haeckel had a point

See the full chapter at Panda's Thumb:

Conclusion
Whereas Haeckel’s recapitulation theory was wrong in detail, recapitulation, as we now understand it, provides powerful support for Darwin’s ideas of common ancestry and descent with modification. Because development is genetically controlled, small changes in developmental genes can have substantial implications for an individual’s juvenile and adult form and function, and on its eventual ability to survive and produce offspring of its own.
In the next chapter, we will introduce and describe a new field of biology that shows, through the biology of genes, how an individual passes from a single-celled egg to a multi-celled adult and how a fish journeys through evolutionary time to eventually arrive as a human. This is the field of evolutionary developmental biology, or Evo Devo.


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