Author(s): Borgens RB
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Abstract It is proposed that, whereas an actual wound to a salamander limb may initiate limb regeneration, a local and developmentally programmed integumentary wound may initiate limb development. The electrophysiological changes induced by these lesions of the skin may be a common denominator linking limb regeneration and limb development. Such early electrical events are considered to initiate or guide the early accumulation of cells, and to help to produce the local environment in which a limb will arise. This scheme provides a self-limiting positive-feedback mechanism for the production of a localized area where other developmental mechanisms act in concert with endogenous electrical fields (or in their complete absence), thereby leading to limb differentiation. This hypothesis may not be restricted to limb formation; it may be of more general significance, i.e. in the process of organogenesis in embryos. One might reasonably suggest that, by such a mechanism, any developing placode (for example, auditory or olfactory placodes) might form and localize.
This article was published in Differentiation
and referenced in Biological Systems: Open Access