Development and Evolutionary Constraints in Animals

Galis, F., Metz, H., & van Alphen, J. (2018). Development and Evolutionary Constraints in Animals. Annual Review of Ecology, Evolution, and Systematics 49 (1) 499-522. 10.1146/annurev-ecolsys-110617-062339.

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We review the evolutionary importance of developmental mechanisms in constraining evolutionary changes in animals—in other words, developmental constraints. We focus on hard constraints that can act on macroevolutionary timescales. In particular, we discuss the causes and evolutionary consequences of the ancient metazoan constraint that differentiated cells cannot divide and constraints against changes of phylotypic stages in vertebrates and other higher taxa. We conclude that in all cases these constraints are caused by complex and highly controlled global interactivity of development, the disturbance of which has grave consequences. Mutations that affect such global interactivity almost unavoidably have many deleterious pleiotropic effects, which will be strongly selected against and will lead to long-term evolutionary stasis. The discussed developmental constraints have pervasive consequences for evolution and critically restrict regeneration capacity and body plan evolution.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: evo-devo, body plan evolution, evolutionary constraint, parthenogenesis, phylotypic stages, regeneration capacity
Research Programs: Evolution and Ecology (EEP)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 29 Nov 2018 07:03
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:31

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