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Published 2016 | public
Book Section - Chapter

Implications of Developmental Gene Regulatory Networks Inside and Outside Developmental Biology


The insight that the genomic control of developmental process is encoded in the form of gene regulatory networks has profound impacts on many areas of modern bioscience. Most importantly, it affects developmental biology itself, as it means that a causal understanding of development requires knowledge of the architecture of regulatory network interactions. Furthermore, it follows that functional changes in developmental gene regulatory networks have to be considered as a primary mechanism for evolutionary process. We here discuss some of the recent advances in gene regulatory network biology and how they have affected our current understanding of development, evolution, and regulatory genomics.

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© 2016 Elsevier Inc. Acknowledgements: Many thanks go to Deanna Thomas for preparation of the figures. This work was supported by National Institutes of Health Grant HD-037105. Commentary: The overall idea and the initial paragraphs of this article have been conceived and written on a sunny fall afternoon, the last day of Eric's life. It thus represents the last product of an incredibly rewarding intellectual collaboration and friendship. Out of respect, these parts of the manuscript were left unchanged. The article was completed on the basis of countless discussions, and therefore possibly in accordance with Eric's views.

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