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Vitamin A Forms Gradients In Embryo And Conveys Information Across Long Distances

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http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v496/n7445/full/nature12037.html

Complex Regulation of cyp26a1 Creates a Robust Retinoic Acid Gradient in the Zebrafish Embryo

Retinoic acid is a signaling molecule that plays an important role in the development of the brain in animal embryos. It forms a gradient along the body of the embryo from the head end to the tail end, but it has proved difficult to measure this gradient directly. The experiments show that retinoic acid forms a gradient in the embryos, with high levels at the tail end and lower levels at the head end. Retinoic acid can directly convey graded positional information over long distances.

More than 100 years ago the idea of a morphogenetic field was proposed by A.G. Gurwitsch, as a way to explain the orderly movements of cells in embryos and growing tissues, and to understand the principles that cause cells to change appropriately when their location in the organism changes. For 30 years, the concept guided research in embryology, but also led to important discoveries in the biology of cancer, aging, wound repair, and other important areas. But by the late 1940s, a more abstract approach to biology, based on the gene doctrine of Mendel and Weismann, took charge of academic and governmental biological research. This ideology at first said that organisms are determined by unchanging units of inheritance, "genes," and later when genes were found to be susceptible to mutation, the changes were said to be always random. The Central Dogma of the ideology was that any meaningful, adaptive changes that occur in an organism can't influence the genes. For many years, adaptive changes were said to be nothing but changes in the size or function of existing cells, because the cells of the major organs of the body were supposed to be created before birth, or in infancy.
 
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Such_Saturation

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I'm doing my assignment with the description :arghh::singing:
 

tara

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Does this imply that one might get different results from applying vit-A supplements transdermally via the feet compared with via the chest or forehead?
Anyone notice a difference depending on where?

I think Peat said he got headaches if he applied vit-A anywhere on his face or neck, probably because he got a tiny bit on his lips. Maybe it was being applied at a disruptive place in the head to toe (tail) gradient?

I'm doing my assignment with the description :arghh::singing:
Sounds like you are getting to do an interesting course.
 

tara

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Such_Saturation

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I do want to try this vitamin A on the feet though :shock: who knows...
 

tara

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dookie

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I think Peat said he got headaches if he applied vit-A anywhere on his face or neck, probably because he got a tiny bit on his lips. Maybe it was being applied at a disruptive place in the head to toe (tail) gradient?

Where did he say this? Can you please provide the quote?

I only remember him saying that he would get headaches if it reached his lips, obviously because a small amount would then be swallowed, and it has an allergenic effect on him. I doubt the gradient thing
 

tara

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I doubt the gradient thing
Fair enough, it's a long shot speculation on my part. The OP post talks about the retinoic acid gradient having an effect in the animal embryos, not in full grown humans, and nothing so specific as headache symptoms. Yes, he's referred to it touching his lips and the headaches being allergy reactions.

This quote from Peat refers to him using it on his feet:

I have had bad headaches when I used vitamin A orally, and even getting a little on my lips was enough to do it. It could be that the Nutrisorb-A was the cause, if you used it orally. I use it only on my legs and feet.

This was the Peat quote I was thinking of, refers to getting it on face and arms, not neck, and as you say, he considered it an allergic reaction to some manufacturing contaminant:
In my own migraine experience, I found that a very small amount of either vitamin A or magnesium chloride could cause big headaches for two or three days. If I had put vitamin A anywhere on my face or arms, enough would touch my lips to cause the headache. It wasn't the vitamin A or magnesium itself that did it, but some very powerful allergen in the chemically manufactured products.
 

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