Acta Biotheoretica

, Volume 31, Issue 3, pp 181–184 | Cite as

Amphibian regeneration and cellular heterochrony

  • Roy Douglas Pearson


It is posited that the initiating event of amphibian regeneration of a limb, is ‘retrodifferentiation’* of what are to become the developing cells of the blastema. These cells reiterate a larval or premetamorphic ontogenic repertoire, induced by elevated levels of prolactin with adequate innervation. Subsequent redifferentiation of the blastema cells occurs, controlled by thyroxine and innervation.

This temporal displacement of cellular morphologic characters in regeneration should be looked upon as a function of the ability to reiterate larval characters and subsequently metamorphose. If correct, this would explain why amphibians which metamorphose only once, lose the ability to postmetamorphically regenerate. An exception to this,Xenopus laevis, an anuran which can epimorphically regenerate, to some extent, will be discussed.[/p]


Elevated Level Prolactin Morphologic Character Thyroxine Xenopus Laevis 
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Copyright information

© Martinus Nijhoff/Dr W Junk Publishers 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roy Douglas Pearson
    • 1
  1. 1.Science & Medicine LibraryUniversity of Toronto, 7 King's College CircleTorontoCanada

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