Biology Tutorials > Control of Growth & Development

Control of Growth & Development

genes controlling growth and development

Genes are essential as they are key regulators of growth and development.

Control of Growth & Development tutorials look at how the genetic makeup determines the biological processes on a day to day basis. Various hormones are also described. Animals and plants produce hormones to incite and regulate their growth. However, growth is not only genetic and hormonal in nature. It may also depend on external factors, such as light and nutrient availability.


  • To understand how genes control the growth and development of organisms
  • To deliver a concise information on the different hormones of animals and plants, and their biological roles, especially in animal and plant growth
  • To become familiar with the different growth patterns, the sigmoid curve, annual plant growth, tree growth, human growth, and insect growth

Key Points

  • Genes, when switched on, code for proteins, especially metabolites essential for various biological activities.
  • The pituitary gland is responsible for the creation of many hormones that are related to growth in higher animals, including humans. The amount of each hormone production is regulated by the hypothalamus, a part of the brain situated next to the pituitary gland.
  • Hormones are chemical messengers produced by switching on the genes designed to produce them. In humans and many animals, the hormones are chiefly produced by the endocrine glands.
  • In plants, hormones are also produced in cells, such as meristems. Examples of plant hormones are auxin and gibberellins; both hormones are capable of promoting cell division and elongation in plants. Auxins, though, are also capable of inhibiting growth.
  • Apart from genetic and hormonal modulation, there are other factors required for growth. In plants, for instance, the amount of light and nutritive elements, such as nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium, are crucial for plant growth.
Genetic Control – On and Off Genes

Genes are the blueprint of our bodies, a blueprint that creates a variety of proteins essential to any organism’s survival. Find out in this lesson the various factors that affect growth. ..

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Gene Action – Operon Hypothesis

Learn how the way genes control and determine every aspect of the body. This lesson uses lac operon as an example. ..

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Hormone Production

Hormones are chemical messengers produced by specialized glands and they were produced by switching on the genes designed to produce them. This tutorial looks at how genes control the production of hormones within the endocrine system of animals…

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Animal Growth Hormones

Hormones are produced in the endocrine glands of animals. The pituitary gland and hypothalamus are the most important in regards to the regulation of growth and development. Know the different hormones of animals in this tutorial…

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Plant Auxins – Phototropism & Geotropism

Plants produce hormones to regulate their growth. Auxins, for instance, influence plant growth. Know the role of auxin in plant growth and development in this tutorial…

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Gibberellins and Gibberellic Acid

This tutorial describes the role of gibberellin family in plants. Find out the effects of gibberellin on plant growth and development here…

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Plant Meristems and Growth

In plants, growth occurs in meristems, which are the site of repeated cell division of unspecialized cells. These cells differentiate and become specialized in relation to the function they will perform. Learn more about plant meristems in this tutorial…

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Effect of Chemicals on Growth & Development in Organisms

Plants and animals need elements, such as nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium for proper growth and development. Certain chemicals though can halt growth, e.g. herbicides in plants, or affect normal physiological activities, e.g. alcohol. For more info, read this tutorial on the effects of chemicals on plants and animals…

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Lights’ Effect on Growth

This tutorial elaborates on the effect of light on plant growth. It describes how different plants require different amounts of light in a day. The amount of time that a plant requires is called the critical period. Learn more about this topic in this tutorial…

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Growth Patterns

This tutorial describes the sigmoid curve, annual plant growth, tree growth, human growth, and insect growth as the growth curves for the corresponding organisms. Read this tutorial to learn more about the different growth patterns…

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Gene Regulation in Eukaryotes

Learn about the general structure of a eukaryotic gene, the transcription factors, and post-transcriptional regulation…

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