Fate Mapping Techniques
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For more than 2000 years, embryologists, biologists, and philosophers have studied and detailed the processes that follow fertilization. The fertilized egg proliferates into cells that begin to separate into distinct, identifiable zones that will eventually become adult structures through the process of morphogenesis. As the cells continue to multiply, patterns form and cells begin to differentiate, and eventually commit to their fate. This progression of events can be examined by following the developmental path of each progenitor cell and creating a two-dimensional representation where cell location and fate can be labeled and marked. Fate mapping is a method for tracing cell lineages and a fundamental tool of developmental biology and embryology.