Syllabus  Biology 441 Vertebrate Embryology  Albert Harris    Spring 2019

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: Kayla Goforth and Elizabeth Moore


No textbook is required.

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.    Labs will begin on January 16-17.
lab syllabus  

exams and grading

1) Wed. Jan 9 Mammal Embryology in Contrast with Sea Urchin Embryology
lecture notes
2) Friday Jan 11 Subdivision of Vertebrate Embryos into Ectoderm, Mesoderm & Endoderm
lecture notes
3) Monday Jan 14 Morphogenetic Movements and Shape Formation
lecture notes
4) Wednesday Jan 16 Amoeboid locomotion, Electro-osmosis and Fluid-filled Spaces
lecture notes
5) Friday Jan 18 Gastrulation and Extra-Embryonic Membranes
lecture notes
Monday Jan 21 ******* Holiday in Honor of Martin Luther King Jr. ********
6) Wednesday Jan 23 Embryology of Teleost Fish, and Amphibians (Salamanders & Frogs)
7) Friday Jan 25 Embryonic Development of Birds, Reptiles & Mammals
8) Monday Jan 28 Regulative vs. Mosaic Development, Experimental Embryolog
9) Wednesday Jan 30 Experimental Embryology continued
10) Friday Feb 1 Review for first examination
11) Monday Feb 4 First Examination
12) Wednesday Feb 6 Some Mathematical Concepts that Are Needed to Understand Shape Formation: Pressures, Surface Curvatures, and Tensions
13) Friday Feb 8 How Do Physical Forces Cause the Shapes of Anatomical Structures?
14) Monday Feb 11 Symmetries of Causes Control Symmetries of Anatomical Shapes
15) Wednesday Feb 13 Reaction-Diffusion Systems: Instabilities that Create Geometric Patterns
16) Friday Feb 15 Somites and Other Structures that Develop from Mesoderm
17) Monday Feb 18 Ovaries and Testes; Primordial Germ Cells and Gamete Formation; Ectoderm
18) Wednesday Feb 20 Retino-tectal projections
19) Friday Feb 22 Chemotaxis; Stomodeum and Endoderm
20) Monday Feb 25 Heart Development
21) Wednesday Feb 27 Review for Second Examination
22) Friday Mar 1 Second Examination
23) Monday Mar 4 Sponge Aggregation and Cell Sorting
24) Wednesday Mar 6 Lessons from the History of Cell Sorting
25) Friday Mar 8 Limb Buds
 March 11-15 spring break
26) Monday Mar 18 Programmed Cell Death; Liesegang Rings: Geometrical Patterns Formed by Chemical Reactions
27) Wednesday Mar 20 More on Limb Buds, the Apical Epidermal Ridge, and Regeneration
28) Friday Mar 22 Atherosclerosis
29) Monday Mar 25 Immunology, Allergies, and Autoimmune Diseases in Relation to Embryology
30) Wednesday Mar 27 Immunology, continued
31) Friday March 29 Immunology, continued
32) Monday Apr 1 More on any topics not completely covered so far
33) Wednesday Apr 3 Review for Third Examination
34) Friday Apr 5 Third Examination
35) Monday Apr 8 Embryology of Plants
36) Wednesday Apr 10 Resting Potentials, Fertilization, and Galvanotaxis
36) Friday Apr 12 Metamorphosis
37) Monday Apr 15 Aging
38) Wednesday Apr 17 Cancer as Disruption of Embryological Mechanisms
39) Friday Apr 19 ******* Holiday ********
40) Monday Apr 22 Cancer, continued
41) Wednesday Apr 24 Evolutionary Developmental Biology, the so-called "Evo-Devo"
42) Friday Apr 26 Review of How Development Works
  FINAL EXAM: Monday, May 6, 8:00 am

The final exam will be cumulative, covering topics in the entire course.
Review questions will be posted before the exam.