Organ size determination and the limits of regulation

Cell Cycle. 2008 Feb 1;7(3):318-24. doi: 10.4161/cc.7.3.5348. Epub 2007 Nov 21.


The size of an organism dictates both its functional challenges and how it meets them. Despite being a universal feature of all living creatures, how an organism determines its size, and that of its internal organs, is largely unknown. In particular, the mechanisms by which organs sense magnitude and alter cellular behavior to ensure symmetry, proportionality and correct final size are unknown. This review outlines our current understanding of the field and highlights several important outstanding questions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Division / physiology
  • Cell Enlargement*
  • Cell Size
  • Humans
  • Organ Size / physiology*
  • Stem Cells / cytology
  • Stem Cells / physiology