A Comparison of Reaction Diffusion and Mechanochemical Models for Limb Development

  • Philip Maini
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 205)


Several theoretical models have been proposed to attempt to elucidate the underlying mechanisms involved in the spatial patterning of skeletal elements in the limb. Here, I briefly compare two such models - reaction diffusion (RD) and mechanochemical (MC) - and highlight their properties and predictions.


Reaction Diffusion Skeletal Element Developmental Constraint Skeletal Pattern Vertebrate Limb 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. P. Alberch and E. Gale, Size dependency during the development of the amphibian foot. Colchicine induced digital loss and reduction, J. Embryol. exp. Morphol. 76, 177–197 (1983).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. P.K. Maini and M. Solursh, Cellular mechanisms of pattern formation in the developing limb, Int. Rev. Cytology (to appear).Google Scholar
  3. G.F. Oster, J.D. Murray, and A.K. Harris, Mechanical aspects of mesenchymal morphogenesis, J. Embryol. exp. Morphol. 78, 83125 (1983).Google Scholar
  4. G.F. Oster, J.D. Murray, and P.K. Maini, A model for chondrogenic condensations in the developing limb: the role of extracellular matrix and cell tractions, J. Embryol. exp. Morphol. 89, 93–112 (1985).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. G.F. Oster, N. Shubin, J.D. Murray, and P. Alberch, Evolution and morphogenetic rules. The shape of the vertebrate limb in ontogeny and phylogeny, Evolution 45, 862–884 (1988).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. G.F. Oster and J.D. Murray, Pattern formation models and developmental constraints, in J.P. Trinkaus Anniversary Volume 1989 (in press).Google Scholar
  7. A. M. Turing, The chemical basis of morphogenesis, Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. Lond. B237, 37–72 (1952).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. L. Wolpert, Positional information and the spatial pattern of cellular differentiation, J. Theor. Biol. 25, 1–47 (1969).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. L. Wolpert, Positional information and pattern formation, Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. Lond. B295, 441–450 (1981).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. L. Wolpert and A. Hornbruch, Double anterior chick limb buds and models for cartilage rudiment specification, Development 109, 961–966 (1990).PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philip Maini
    • 1
  1. 1.Mathematical InstituteCentre for Mathematical BiologyOxfordUK

Personalised recommendations