Brian K. Hall

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Brian K. Hall
Institutions Dalhousie University
Known for Neural Crest as a Fourth Germ Layer

Brian Keith Hall is the George S. Campbell Professor of Biology and University Research Professor Emeritus at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.[1][2][3] Professor Hall has researched and extensively written on bone and cartilage formation in developing vertebrate embryos. He is an active participant in the evolutionary developmental biology (EVO-DEVO) debate on the nature and mechanisms of animal body plan formation. Professor Hall has proposed that the neural crest tissue of vertebrates may be viewed as a fourth embryonic germ layer. As such, the neural crest - in Hall's view - plays a role equivalent to that of the endoderm, mesoderm, and ectoderm of bilaterian development and is a definitive feature of vertebrates (as hypothesized by Gans and Northcutt[1983]). As such, vertebrates are the only quadroblastic, rather than triploblastic bilaterian animals. In vertebrates the neural crest serves to integrate the somatic division (derived from ectoderm and mesoderm) and visceral division (derived from endoderm and mesoderm) together via a wide range novel vertebrate tissues (bone, cartilage, sympathetic nervous system, etc...).

He has been associated with Dalhousie University since 1968. Since his retirement in 2007, he has been University Research Professor Emeritus and Emeritus Professor of Biology.

Early life and education[edit]

Hall is the son of Doris Garrad and Harry Hall. He was born in Port Kembla, New South Wales, on 28 October 1941. He attended the University of New England in Armidale New South Wales, receiving a B.Sc. in zoology in 1963, a B.Sc. (Honors) in zoology in 1965, and a Ph.D. in zoology in 1968.

His Ph.D. thesis, undertaken under the supervision of Patrick D. F. Murray, FAA (Fellow of the Australian Academy), concerned the differentiation of bone and secondary cartilage in chicken embryos.[4]

Career[edit]

Over the course of his career, Hall’s laboratory research has focused on developmental biology and evolutionary biology. His work played a major role in integrating these two fields into the discipline now known as Evolutionary Developmental Biology (evo-devo). He and his students, according to one source, “pioneered an epigenetic view of bone differentiation and of vertebrate development in general, and highlighted the importance of epigenetic tissue interactions in vertebrate evolution.” His 1975 paper “Evolutionary consequences of skeletal differentiation” (American Zoologist) marked the beginning of “the process of building a bridge between evolutionary and developmental biology from the developmental biology side.” His 1992 textbook Evolutionary Developmental Biology is widely viewed as definitive. “This work defines a field, which, in turn, has revitalized the study of evolution,” writes one source.

Hall is particularly interested in the vertebrate neural crest and in skeletal tissues that arise from neural crest cells.

He has also written extensively about the history of evolutionary biology and about leading figures in the field. “Hall's understanding of the intellectual roots of his discipline,” one source observes, “deepens his perspective on current theoretical issues and colors much of his writing.”[4]

Hall has spent his career in the Biology Department of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he was hired as an assistant professor in 1968. He was made full professor in 1975, was Chair of the department from 1978 to 1985, was Izaak Walton Killam Research Professor from 1990 to 1995, was Faculty of Science Killam Professor of Biology from 1996 to 2001, George S. Campbell Professor of Biology from 2001 to 2007, and University Research Professor from 2002 to 2007.[4]

He was also Canada Council for the Arts Killiam Research Fellow from 2003 to 2005. Since 2007, he has been University Research Professor Emeritus and Emeritus Professor of Biology.[5]

In 2008 he was appointed Visiting Distinguished Professor at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona.[4]

Retirement[edit]

Hall retired in July 2007 and became a Professor Emeritus. Since his retirement he has spent much of his time writing undergraduate textbooks.[6]

Honors and awards[edit]

Hall received the first D.Sc. in Biological Sciences from the The University of New England in 1978.

He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (FRSC) in 1985, won the Fry Medal from the Canadian Society of Zoologists in 1994, won the International Craniofacial Biology Distinguished Scientist Award in 1996, and won the Alexander Kowalevsky Medal and honorary membership in the Saint-Petersburg Society of Naturalists in 2001.

He was elected a Foreign Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2002, won an NSERC Award of Excellence in Research in 2002, won a Canada Council for the Arts Killam Research Fellowship for 2003-2005, was named an honorary member of The Golden Key International Honour Society in 2003, and won the $100,000 Killam Prize in Neural Sciences from the Canada Council for the Arts in 2005.

The “Hall Award” was established by the Canadian Society of Zoologists in 2006 for the best student platform paper presented in the Comparative Morphology and Development Division at the Society annual meeting.[4][5]

Selected Publications[edit]

Books[edit]

Hall's earlier books include:

Hall and Norman Maclean's 1987 book Cell Commitment and Differentiation (CUP Archive) examines the processes of activation and regulation that make possible the controlled expression of restricted sets of genes in plant and animal species.[7]

Hall 's 1999 book The Neural Crest in Development and Evolution (Springer) recounts the discovery, origins, and cellular derivatives of the neural crest and neural crest cells in agnathan and jawed vertebrates or gnathostomes. It addresses the role of the germ layers in early embryogenesis, the development of nervous systems, and the evolution of the vertebrate head. It also examines mutations, tumors, and the exposure of embryos to exogenous agents.[8]

The Origin and Evolution of Larval Forms by Hall and Marvalee H. Wake (Academic Press, 1999) is concerned with larvae, which “represent one of the classic problems of evolutionary biology and may explain how new body plans originate.”[9]

Hall and W.M. Olson published Keywords and Concepts in Evolutionary Developmental Biology (Harvard, 2003). Hall, R. Pearson, and G.B. Müller published Environment, Development, and Evolution: Toward a Synthesis (MIT Press, 2004).

Hall and Benedikt Hallgrímsson, published Variation: A Central Concept in Biology (Elsevier/ Academic Press, 2005; Academic Press, 2011).[10] it is a study of “variation between individuals within the same species,” a phenomenon that, although central to evolutionary biology, has “remained peripheral to the study of mechanisms of evolutionary change.” The book seeks to “bring...variation back to the center of the evolutionary stage.”[11] Carl D. Schlichting, reviewing the book in Bioscience, called the book “authoritative.” Daniel E. Lieberman of Harvard called the book “comprehensive, diverse and stimulating...a must-read for anyone interested in development and evolution...a tour-de-force treatment of a critical subject.”[12]

Hall's book Bones and Cartilage: Developmental and Evolutionary Skeletal Biology (Elsevier Academic Press) appeared in 2005.

Hall 's 2007 book Fins into Limbs. Development, Transformation, and Evolution was published by University of Chicago Press.[13] In a review for Science, Alan C. Love wrote that “Fins into Limbs is an exploration of a longstanding evolutionary puzzle associated with the origin of tetrapods and the vertebrate invasion of land. Brian Hall has assembled a stellar array of contributors from various fields that represent the pieces necessary for a solution.” Love called the book “handsomely executed and also timely...a necessary reference and a worthy guide to future research on this and other evolutionary transitions.”[14] Mark W. Hamrick, in the Journal of Mammal Evolution, wrote that “in driving a new era of research in skeletal biology, Fins into Limbs is a great success.” Michael J. Benton, in Evolution and Development, called the book “essential reading for a broad range of natural scientists, from embryologists to paleontologists, and geneticists to philosophers.” And Michel Laurin, in Copeia, called it “an indispensable reference for all scientists interested in the origin, development and evolution of limbs.”[15]

Hall and Benedikt Hallgrimsson wrote Epigenetics: Linking Genotype and Phenotype in Development and Evolution (University of California Press, 2011).[16] A review BioScience describes Chapters 4 and 5 of the book as “an excellent primer for genomic methylation and histone modification” and praises its concluding section as “a tour de force review of epigenetic disorders in mammals.” Hall and Hallgrimsson, according to the reviewer, “make...a convincing case for an 'epigenetic revolution', at least in medicine.”[17][18] The book was described as “eloquent, comprehensive, and insightful” by Marcelo R. Sanchez-Villagra, in a review for Evolution & Development.[19]

Recent articles[edit]

  • Hall, B. K. (2012). Parallelism, deep homology, and evo-devo. Evol. & Devel. 14, 39-33.
  • Hall, B. K. (2012) Homology and alternatives to homology — analogy, homoplasy, convergence or novelty. Devel. Psychobiol.
  • Hall, B. K. (2012) Summarizing Craniofacial genetics and developmental biology (SCGDB). Am. J. Med. Genet.
  • Hall, B. K. (2012) Lamarck, Lamarckism, epigenetics and epigenetic inheritance, Metascience.
  • Hall, B. K., and Kerney, R. (2012) Levels of biological organization and the origin of novelty J. Exp. Zool. (Mol. Dev. Evol.)
  • Huttenlocker, A. K., Woodward, H., and Hall, B. K. (2012). The Biology of Bone. In Bone Histology Of Fossil Tetrapods: Issues, Methods, And Data Bases (K. Padian, ed.). University of California Press, Berkeley, CA.
  • Hall, B. K. (2011). Ontogeny does not recapitulate phylogeny, it creates phylogeny. Evol. Devel., 132, 401–404.
  • K. A. Rawlinson, J. A. Gillis, et al. (2011). Taxonomy and life history of the Acropora-eating flatworm Amakusaplana acroporae nov. sp. (Polycladida: Prosthiostomidae). Coral Reefs 30, 693–705.
  • Hallgrîmsson, B., and Hall, B. K. (2011). Epigenetics: The Context of Development. In Epigenetics: Linking Genotype and Phenotype in Development and Evolution. Hallgrîmsson, B., and Hall, B. K, eds), pp. 424–438. University of California Press, Berkeley, CA
  • Kerney, R., Kim, E., Hangarter, R. P., Heiss, A. A., Bishop, C., and Hall, B. K. (2011). Intracellular invasion of green algae. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. U.S.A., 108, 6497–6502.
  • Bishop, C. D, Hall, B. K, and Bates, W.R. (2010). Heat shock protein 90 expression in two migratory cell types of ascidian embryos and larvae: test cells deposit HSP90 on the larval tunic. Int. J. Devel. Biol. 54: 1337–1346.
  • Budney, L. A., and Hall. B. K. (2010). Comparative morphology and osteology of pelvic fin-derived midline suckers in lumpfishes, snailfishes and gobies J. Appl. Ichthyol. 26, 167-175.
  • Hall, B. K. (2010). Charles Darwin, Embryology, Evolution and Skeletal Plasticity. J. Appl. Ichthyol., 26, 148-161.
  • Kerney, R., Hall, B. K., and Hanken, J. (2010). Regulatory elements of col2a1 in Xenopus drive cartilaginous gene expression in I-SceI Meganuclease-Mediated Transgenic Frogs. Int. J. Devel. Biol. 54, 141-150.
  • Long, J. A., Hall, B. K., McNamara, K. J., and Smith, M. M. (2010) The phylogenetic origin of jaws in vertebrates: developmental plasticity and heterochrony. Kirtlandia. 57, 46–52.
  • Vickaryous, M., and Hall, B. K. (2010). Comparative development of the crocodylian interclavicle and avian furcula, with comments on the homology of dermal elements in the pectoral apparatus. J. Exp. Zool. (Mol. Dev. Evol.) 314B, 196-207.
  • Hall, Brian K (December 7, 2000), Populations of Neural Crest Cells and Craniofacial Development, Current and Basic Clinical Research in Craniofacial Development and Disorders Symposium 
  • Hall, Brian K (June 2002), "Palaeontology and Evolutionary Developmental Biology: A Science of the Nineteenth and Twenty-First Centuries", Palaeontology 45 (4): 647–699, doi:10.1111/1475-4983.00253 
  • Hall, Brian K (January 15, 2004), "In Search of Evolutionary Developmental Mechanisms: The 30-year Gap Between 1944 and 1974", Journal of Experimental Zoology, Part B - Molecular and Developmental Evolution 302 (1): 5–18, doi:10.1002/jez.b.20002 

References[edit]

  1. ^ Angier, Natalie (31 May 1995). "Modern 'Wolfmen' May Have Inherited Ancient Gene". The New York Times. p. 10. Retrieved 20 August 2011. 
  2. ^ "Dr. Brian Hall". Dalhousie University. Retrieved 20 August 2011. 
  3. ^ Somers, Mary (February 13, 2002). "Biologist wins the Kowalevsky Medal". Internet Archive (Dalhousie University). Archived from the original on September 25, 2006. Retrieved 20 August 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "Brian K. Hall". The Embryo Project Encyclopedia. 
  5. ^ a b Hall, Brian K; Hallgrimsson, Benedikt (2014), Strickleberger's Evolution (5th ed.), Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning, ISBN 978-1-4496-1484-3, retrieved 21 July 2014 
  6. ^ Brian K. Hall's faculty profile, Halifax, Nova Scotia: Dalhousie University, Department of Biology, retrieved 22 July 2014 
  7. ^ "Cell Commitment and Differentiation". Google Books. 
  8. ^ "The Neutral Crest in Development and Evolution". Google Books. 
  9. ^ "The Origin and Evolution of Larval Forms". Google Books. 
  10. ^ http://biology.dal.ca/People/faculty/hall/hall.htm
  11. ^ "Variation". Google Books. 
  12. ^ "A Central Concept Biology". Amazon. 
  13. ^ "Dr. Brian K. Hall". Dalhousie University. 
  14. ^ Love, Arthur C (2007), "Putting the Pieces Together (preprint of book review)", Science 317: 1502–1503, doi:10.1126/science.1145812, retrieved 22 July 2014 
  15. ^ "Fins into Limbs: Development Transformation". Amazon. 
  16. ^ "Epigenetics". Google Books. 
  17. ^ "Defining Epigenetics in Deterministic Terms". University of California Press. 
  18. ^ "Defining Epigenetics in Deterministic Terms". University of Arizona. 
  19. ^ "Epigenetics Genotype Phenotype Developemnt". Amazon. 

External links[edit]