Cell Differentiation - Process, Specification/Determination and SignificanceSkip to search form Skip to main content. Hall Published 1. A first look at cell commitment 2. Genomic constancy and nuclear totipotency 3. Gene action and regulation 4. The cell surface 5. The extracellular environment 7.
NCBI Bookshelf. An embryo's environment may be a tide pool, a pond, or a uterus. As we saw above, the embryo interacts with its environment, and its developmental trajectory can be guided by information from its surroundings. Thus, a second research program of experimental embryology studies how interactions between embryonic cells generate the embryo. The development of specialized cell types is called differentiation Table 3. These overt changes in cellular biochemistry and function are preceded by a process involving the commitment of the cell to a certain fate.
Developmental Biology. 6th edition.
Cellular differentiation is the process where a cell changes from one cell type to another. Differentiation occurs numerous times during the development of a multicellular organism as it changes from a simple zygote to a complex system of tissues and cell types. Differentiation continues in adulthood as adult stem cells divide and create fully differentiated daughter cells during tissue repair and during normal cell turnover. Some differentiation occurs in response to antigen exposure. Differentiation dramatically changes a cell's size, shape, membrane potential , metabolic activity , and responsiveness to signals. These changes are largely due to highly controlled modifications in gene expression and are the study of epigenetics. With a few exceptions, cellular differentiation almost never involves a change in the DNA sequence itself.