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

$108.00 (P)

  • Date Published: February 2014
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107030442

$ 108.00 (P)

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About the Authors
  • 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.

    • Takes inspiration from Kipling's 'Just So Stories' to explore the latest insights emerging from evo-devo research, explaining the origin and evolution of traits across the animal kingdom
    • Schematic illustrations provide concept maps to encourage a full understanding of the most recent findings in this active and exciting research area
    • Held's unique and engaging style makes the narrative both enlightening and entertaining, guiding students and researchers through even complex concepts
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    Reviews & endorsements

    "… accessible to any reader interested in evolutionary biology while also satisfying the more expert "evo-devotees" willing to explore the depicted topics in depth."
    Arnaud Martin, Evolution and Development

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    Product details

    • Date Published: February 2014
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107030442
    • length: 306 pages
    • dimensions: 253 x 179 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.76kg
    • contains: 56 b/w illus. 8 colour illus. 3 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. The first two-sided animal
    2. The fly
    3. The butterfly
    4. The snake
    5. The cheetah
    6. An evo-devo bestiary

  • Author

    Lewis I. Held, Jr, Texas Tech University
    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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