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Development and Diversity

Development and Diversity

Chapter:
(p.84) 5 Development and Diversity
Source:
What Is Biodiversity?
Author(s):
Maclaurin JamesSterelny Kim
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226500829.003.0005

This chapter considers hidden biodiversity. Variation between both populations and individuals can be morphologically invisible. Two populations can be phenotypically similar yet vary in their genetic resources or in the distribution of those resources. Two individuals can be phenotypically similar, yet differ in their developmental biology. The lineages that those individuals represent might therefore have very different fates or potentials. The chapter sketches the range of developmental resources (and hence differences in those resources) that contribute to evolutionary plasticity. It then illustrates these issues by discussing a salient case in more detail, namely developmental modularity, currently the hottest of hot topics in evolutionary developmental biology.

Keywords:   hidden biodiversity, developmental modularity, developmental resources, evolutionary plasticity

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