Holistic Organism Concept, after Maier (1999, 2021). Structure, function, and genome constitute the shape of an organisms throughout its whole life (ontogenesis). Natural selection acts on the organism and sexual reproduction transfers the organisms’ construction through evolution, eventually reaching new morphotypes and life history modes. Through ontogeny and evolution, the shape of an organism is influenced by various biological aspects such as relative age, social role, loss of teeth in infant and adult, sexual maturity, secondary sexual characteristics, maturation of sexual organs, adolescence, skeletogenesis, tooth eruption, maturity of the neonate (altriciality vs. precocity), organ maturity, placentation and gastrulation mode, blastocyst and cleavage type, content of yolk (lecithal vs. polylecithal), structure of spermia, enzyme, fat and cholesterol, carbohydrate, DNA, RNA, and developmental genetics. Reproduction with kind permission of Scidinge Hall Verlag Tübingen.

  Part of: Werneburg I, Ruf I (2022) Vergleichende Entwicklungsgeschichte — A Festschrift on the occasion of the 80th birthday of Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Maier, Tübingen. Vertebrate Zoology 72: 1125-1136. https://doi.org/10.3897/vz.72.e94711