Cavey, Michael J. Department of Biology, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
Meinke, David Department of Botany and Microbiology, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma.
Last reviewed:December 2019
- Histogenesis and organogenesis
- Differentiation, determination and morphogenesis
- Fertilization and embryogenesis
- Methods of study
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
The study of the development of an organism, commencing with the union of male and female gametes. Embryology literally means the study of embryos, but this definition is restrictive. An embryo is an immature organism contained within the coverings of an egg or within the body of the mother. Strictly speaking, the embryonic period ends at metamorphosis, hatching, or birth. Since developmental processes continue beyond these events, the scope of embryology is customarily broadened to encompass the entire life history of an organism. Embryology may, in this wider context, consider the mechanisms of both asexual reproduction and regeneration.
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