Atlas of Developmental Field Anomalies of the Human Skeleton PDF: A Paleopathology Perspective
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While studying nonmetrical traits in the human skeleton, I began to question the how and why of their development. This led to a study of human skeletal embryology that revealed the various developmental fields responsible for the construction of the human skeleton. Thus, the morphogenetic approach to the analysis of developmental anomalies began with my Arizona State University dissertation, published in 1994, “Developmental Defects of the Axial Skeleton in Paleopathology,” by the University Press of Colorado. Over the years, I have tested this approach to the analyses of developmental anomalies over and over again with positive results, adding just a few revisions and additions for the axial skeleton. However, I have seen the need for clarification of this method into a more simplified version from the earlier text, plus the need to include the appendicular skeleton. Too often there has been questioning, confusion between diseased or traumatized bones and developmental disorders, and misunderstanding of how the various skeletal anomalies develop, and whether or not the morphogenetic approach is applicable. Recent genetic studies within molecular biological embryology provide the necessary proof of the genetic components governing the expressions of skeletal anomalies, supporting the morphogenetic methodology. Molecular DNA studies have revealed the complex interaction of genetic signaling along specified genetic pathways and the genetic variations leading to developmental anomalies within specific developmental fields in the embryo.
Altered genetic signaling can affect how a skeletal part is structured, including programming for secondary ossifications. Thus, the genetic interactions within developmental fields of the evolving embryo set the stage for anomalous or defective development, including skeletal structural variations. Each developmental field is governed by its own set of genetic instructions that can be altered by mutant genetic signals or epigenetic interference at specific developmental threshold events. The outcome is deviation from the expected construct. More than one disturbance can occur within the same developmental field as different threshold events take place. Sometimes an upset in one developing field impinges upon another developmental field, leaving both with anomalous results. Most developmental disturbances follow familial genetic linkages. Some developmental field disturbances appear with specific groups of disorders known as syndromes.
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