News of the WeekDevelopmental Biology

Organs Await Blood Vessels' Go Signal

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Science  28 Sep 2001:
Vol. 293, Issue 5539, pp. 2365
DOI: 10.1126/science.293.5539.2365a

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Blood vessels are the body's plumbing, supplying food and oxygen and removing waste. Now two papers published online this week by Science ( show that blood vessels play a more active role than previously believed: They help direct the construction of the body they serve. The teams report that blood vessels induce development of the pancreas and liver--even before the blood vessels are functioning.