Morphology (biology)

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This article is about the term in biology. Morphology (biology)_sentence_0

For other uses, see Morphology. Morphology (biology)_sentence_1

Morphology is a branch of biology dealing with the study of the form and structure of organisms and their specific structural features. Morphology (biology)_sentence_2

This includes aspects of the outward appearance (shape, structure, colour, pattern, size), i.e. external morphology (or eidonomy), as well as the form and structure of the internal parts like bones and organs, i.e. internal morphology (or anatomy). Morphology (biology)_sentence_3

This is in contrast to physiology, which deals primarily with function. Morphology (biology)_sentence_4

Morphology is a branch of life science dealing with the study of gross structure of an organism or taxon and its component parts. Morphology (biology)_sentence_5

History Morphology (biology)_section_0

The etymology of the word "morphology" is from the Ancient Greek (morphḗ), meaning "form", and (lógos), meaning "word, study, research". Morphology (biology)_sentence_6

While the concept of form in biology, opposed to function, dates back to Aristotle (see Aristotle's biology), the field of morphology was developed by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1790) and independently by the German anatomist and physiologist Karl Friedrich Burdach (1800). Morphology (biology)_sentence_7

Among other important theorists of morphology are Lorenz Oken, Georges Cuvier, Étienne Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire, Richard Owen, Karl Gegenbaur and Ernst Haeckel. Morphology (biology)_sentence_8

In 1830, Cuvier and E.G.Saint-Hilaire engaged in a famous debate, which is said to exemplify the two major deviations in biological thinking at the time – whether animal structure was due to function or evolution. Morphology (biology)_sentence_9

Divisions of morphology Morphology (biology)_section_1

Morphology (biology)_unordered_list_0

  • Comparative morphology is analysis of the patterns of the locus of structures within the body plan of an organism, and forms the basis of taxonomical categorization.Morphology (biology)_item_0_0
  • Functional morphology is the study of the relationship between the structure and function of morphological features.Morphology (biology)_item_0_1
  • Experimental morphology is the study of the effects of external factors upon the morphology of organisms under experimental conditions, such as the effect of genetic mutation.Morphology (biology)_item_0_2
  • Anatomy is a "branch of morphology that deals with the structure of organisms".Morphology (biology)_item_0_3
  • Molecular morphology is a rarely used term, usually referring to the superstructure of polymers such as fiber formation or to larger composite assemblies. The term is commonly not applied to the spatial structure of individual molecules.Morphology (biology)_item_0_4
  • Gross morphology refers to the collective structures of an organism as a whole as a general description of the form and structure of an organism, taking into account all of its structures without specifying an individual structure.Morphology (biology)_item_0_5

Morphology and classification Morphology (biology)_section_2

Most taxa differ morphologically from other taxa. Morphology (biology)_sentence_10

Typically, closely related taxa differ much less than more distantly related ones, but there are exceptions to this. Morphology (biology)_sentence_11

Cryptic species are species which look very similar, or perhaps even outwardly identical, but are reproductively isolated. Morphology (biology)_sentence_12

Conversely, sometimes unrelated taxa acquire a similar appearance as a result of convergent evolution or even mimicry. Morphology (biology)_sentence_13

In addition, there can be morphological differences within a species, such as in Apoica flavissima where queens are significantly smaller than workers. Morphology (biology)_sentence_14

A further problem with relying on morphological data is that what may appear, morphologically speaking, to be two distinct species, may in fact be shown by DNA analysis to be a single species. Morphology (biology)_sentence_15

The significance of these differences can be examined through the use of allometric engineering in which one or both species are manipulated to phenocopy the other species. Morphology (biology)_sentence_16

A step relevant to the evaluation of morphology between traits/features within species, includes an assessment of the terms: homology and . Morphology (biology)_sentence_17

Homology between features indicate that those features have been derived from a common ancestor. Morphology (biology)_sentence_18

Alternatively, homoplasy between features describes those that can resemble each other, but derive independently via parallel or convergent evolution. Morphology (biology)_sentence_19

3D cell morphology: classification Morphology (biology)_section_3

Invention and development of microscopy enable the observation of 3-D cell morphology with both high spatial and temporal resolution. Morphology (biology)_sentence_20

The dynamic processes of these cell morphology which are controlled by a complex system play an important role in varied important biological process, such as immune and invasive responses. Morphology (biology)_sentence_21

See also Morphology (biology)_section_4

Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: (biology).