Show Summary Details

p. 485. Germ cells and sexlocked

  • Lewis Wolpert


The outcome of germ-cell development in animals is either sperm or an egg. ‘Germ cells and sex’ describes the three key functions of germ cells: the preservation of the genetic integrity of the germline; the generation of genetic diversity; and the transmission of genetic information to the next generation. In all but the simplest animals, the cells of the germline are the only cells that can give rise to a new organism. The chromosomes and hormones required for sexual development in mammals and other animals are discussed and the male and female sexual organs of plants are also considered.

Access to the complete content on Very Short Introductions online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.