Syllabus  Biology 441 Vertebrate Embryology  Albert Harris    Spring 2018

MWF 9:05-9:55 Wilson 107

Office: Room 103 Wilson Hall
Office Hours: 10-12 Monday and Wednesday, or at other times by appointment

web sites: http://www. and

office phone 919-966-1230
home 919-493-1572

Teaching assistants: Lindsay Wickersham and Chris Cunningham


Lecture notes, videos, review questions, and other material needed for exams will be posted on this web site throughout the semester.
Please check it frequently for updates.

The Biology 441L lab is NOT required for students taking the lecture course. It is a separate 1-hour course.    lab syllabus
Labs will begin on January 17-18.

exams and grading

1) Wed. Jan 10 Mammal Embryology in Contrast with Sea Urchin Embryology
lecture notes
2) Friday Jan 12 Subdivision of Vertebrate Embryos into Ectoderm, Mesoderm & Endoderm
lecture notes
    Monday Jan 15 ******* Holiday in Honor of Martin Luther King Jr. ********
3) Wednesday Jan 17 Embryology of Teleost Fish. Why are zebra-fish good "model organisms"?
4) Friday Jan 19 Embryology of Amphibians (Salamanders & Frogs). Advantages for Experiments
5) Monday Jan 22 Embryonic Development of Birds, Reptiles & Mammals. What are their Similarities?
6) Wednesday Jan 24 Experimental Embryology, Regulation, Fate Maps, In Situ Labeling, Other Methods
7) Friday Jan 26 Experimental Embryology: Explanatory Concepts
8) Monday Jan 29 Cell Sorting and Discovery of Selective Adhesion Proteins
9) Wednesday Jan 31 What Forces Cause Rearrangements of Differentiated Cells?
10) Friday Feb 2 Review for first examination
11) Monday Feb 5 First Examination
12) Wednesday Feb 7 Some Mathematical Concepts that Are Needed to Understand Shape Formation:
Pressures, Surface Curvatures, and Tensions
13) Friday Feb 9 How Do Physical Forces Cause the Shapes of Anatomical Structures?
14) Monday Feb 12 Symmetries of Causes Control Symmetries of Anatomical Shapes
15) Wednesday Feb 14 Reaction-Diffusion Systems: Instabilities that Create Geometric Patterns
16) Friday Feb 16 Somites and Other Structures that Develop From Mesoderm
17) Monday Feb 19 Heart Development
18) Wednesday Feb 21 Ovaries and Testes; Primordial Germ Cells and Gamete Formation
19) Friday Feb 23 Cartilage and Bone
20) Monday Feb 26 Development of Ectodermal Tissues and Organs
21) Wednesday Feb 28 Review for Second Examination
22) Friday Mar 2 Second Examination
23) Monday Mar 5 Chemotaxis
24) Wednesday Mar 7 Retino-Tectal Projections
25) Friday Mar 9 Endoderm
 March 12-16 spring break
26) Monday Mar 19 Development of Higher Plants, in Contrast to Animals
27) Wednesday Mar 21 Sex Determination
28) Friday Mar 23 Limb Bud Development
29) Monday Mar 26 Limb buds, continued
30) Wednesday Mar 28 Regeneration, Especially of Legs
      Friday March 30 ******* Holiday ********
32) Monday Apr 2 Regeneration, continued
33) Wednesday Apr 4 Review for Third Examination
34) Friday Apr 6 Third Examination
35) Monday Apr 9 Metamorphosis: Tadpoles > Frogs, Caterpillars > Moths; etc.
36) Wednesday Apr 11 Immunology, Allergies and Autoimmune Diseases: How These Depend on Embryology
36) Friday Apr 13 Immunology, continued
37) Monday Apr 16 Locomotion of Amoebae and Tissue Cells
38) Wednesday Apr 18 Cell Locomotion and Traction Forces
39) Friday Apr 20 Cancer as Disruption of Embryological Mechanisms
40) Monday Apr 23 Aging
41) Wednesday Apr 25 Evolutionary Developmental Biology
42) Friday Apr 27 Review of How Development Works
  FINAL EXAM: Monday, May 7, 8:00 am