Animal evolution has always been at the core of Biology, but even today many fundamental questions remain open. The field of animal 'evo-devo' is leveraging recent technical and conceptual advances in development, paleontology, genomics and transcriptomics to propose radically different answers to traditional evolutionary controversies.
This book is divided into four parts, each of which approaches animal evolution from a different perspective. The first part (chapters 2 and 3) investigates how new sources of evidence have changed conventional views of animal origins, while the second (chapters 4-8) addresses the connection between embryogenesis and evolution, and the genesis of cellular, tissue and morphological diversity. The third part (chapters 9 and 10) investigates how big data in molecular biology is transforming our understanding of the mechanisms governing morphological change in animals. In closing, the fourth part (chapters 11-13) explores new theoretical and conceptual approaches to animal evolution.
'Old questions and young approaches to animal evolution' offers a comprehensive and updated view of animal evolutionary biology that will serve both as a first step into this fascinating field for students and university educators, and as a review of complementary approaches for researchers.
Part 1. Animal Origins.- Chapter 1. 1. The protistan cellular and genomic roots of animal multicellularity.- Chapter 2. Exceptionally preserved Cambrian fossils in the genomic era.- Part 2. The developmental view of animal evolution.- Chapter 3. Comparative embryology as a way to understand evolution.- Chapter 4. How do developmental programs evolve?.- Chapter 5. How do morphological novelties evolve? Novel approaches to define novel morphologies.- Chapter 6. Germ layer evolution: using novel approaches to address a classic evolutionary embryological problem.- Chapter 7. Origin and evolution of nervous systems.- Part 3. The genomic view of animal evolution.- Chapter 8. Boosting macroevolution: genomic changes triggering qualitative expansions of regulatory potential.- Chapter 9. How do gene networks promote morphological evolution?.- Part 4. Theoretical approaches to animal evolution.- Chapter 10. How does modularity in the genotype-phenotype map shape development and evolution?.- Chapter 11. Can we compute the embryo?.- Chapter 12. What is a biological individual?.