Gravity and embryonic development
Young, R. S. (1976). "Gravity and embryonic development." Life Sciences & Space Research 14: 69-75
The relationship between the developing embryo (both plant and animal) and a gravitational field has long been contemplated. The difficulty in designing critical experiments on the surface of the earth because of its background of 1 g, has been an obstacle to a resolution of the problem. Biological responses to gravity (particularly in plants) are obvious in many cases; however, the influence of gravity as an environmental input to the developing embryo is not as obvious and has proven to be extremely difficult to define. In spite of this, over the years numerous attempts have been made using a variety of embryonic materials to come to grips with the role of gravity in development. Three research tools are available: the centrifuge, the clinostat, and the orbiting spacecraft. Experimental results are now available from all three sources. Some tenuous conclusions are drawn, and an attempt at a unifying theory on gravitational influence on embryonic development is made.
PMCID: Source: NASA. 00002755
Accession Number: 11977291