Brian Hall


PhD., DSc. (New England), LL.D (h.c., Calgary), FAAA, FRSC.

  • Research
  • Recent Post Doctoral Fellows' and PhD. students Occupations
  • Recent Books/Journal Issues written
  • Recent Books edited
  • Selected Journal Publications (past few years)
  • Links
  • Research

    aving retired and become emeritus in July 2007 I no longer teach in the undergraduate programme. Time since 2007 has been used in research and writing on embryonic skeletal development and on “evolutionary developmental biology” (evo-devo) and in removing gout weed from half an acre of Nova Scotia.  

    Over the past several years I have taken up the concept of Evolutionary Cell Biology, which is based on the premise that cells not genes make the features of the phenotype using, in part, information provided by the genotype: there is a cenotype between genotype and phenotype. This is not a new concept but it has been down-played in our concentration on genes, and oddly enough, in our concentration on Evo-devo.

    The approach I have taken is to establish, with Sally Moody of George Washington University and CRC Press, a series of books on Evolutionary Cell Biology. The first book in the series — Cells in Evolutionary Biology: Translating Genotypes into Phenotypes — Past, Present. Future (edited by Brian Hall and Sally) — was published in 2018.

    The second book — Deferring Development: Setting Aside Cells for Future Use in Development and Evolution (edited by Cory Bishop and Brian Hall) —was published in January, 2020. The third book, Cellular Processes in Segmentation, edited by Ariel Chipman, will be published on April 1, 2020. The fourth book (Cellular Dialogues in the Holobiont, edited by Mike Hadfield and Tom Bosch will be published Sept-Oct, 2020. Other books are in various stages of preparation (contact for a list).

    Recent Post Doctoral Fellows and Ph.D. students Occupations

    • Former post-doctoral fellow Andrew Gillis is a Royal Society Research Fellow at Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK.
    • Former post-doctoral fellow Kate Rawlinson is the Janet Thornton Fellow at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and a Research Associate in the Zoology Department at Cambridge University.
    • Former post-doctoral fellow Ryan Kerney is an Associate Professor of Biology at Gettysburg College, Gettysburg, PA.
    • Former post-doctoral fellow Cory Bishop is an Associate Professor of Biology at St. Francis Xavier University, Antigonish, NS.
    • Former Ph.D student Matt Vickaryous is an Associate Professor of Biomedical sciences at Guelph University.
    • Former Ph.D. student Tim Fedak is Acting Curator of Geology at the Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History in Halifax
    • Former post-doctoral fellow Tamara Franz Odendaal is Professor of Biology at Mt. Saint Vincent University where she holds the NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering (Atlantic Region).

    Recent Books written
    •  Bishop, C. D., and Hall, B. K. (2020) Deferring Development: Setting Aside Cells for Future Use in Development and Evolution. CRC Press, Boca Raton FL.
    • Hall, B. K., and Moody, S. A. (2018) Cells in Evolutionary Biology: Translating Genotypes into Phenotypes — Past, Present, Future. CRC Press, Boca Raton FL
    • Hall, B. K., and Hallgrímsson, B. (2013) Strickberger’s Evolution 5th Edition. Jones and Bartlett

    Recent Books/Journal Issues edited

    • Bishop, C., and Hall, B. K. (2019) Deferring Development: Setting aside cells for future use in development and evolution. CRC Press, Boca Raton FL (in press)
    • Hall, B. K., and Moody, S. A. (2018) Cells in Evolutionary Biology: Translating Genotypes into Phenotypes — Past, Present, Future. CRC Press, Boca Raton FL
    • Witten, P. E., Hall, B. K., Huysseune, SA., Laizé, V., Sire, J-Y., Winkler, C., Metz, J. R., and Rosenthal, H. (2018) Interdisciplinary Approaches in Fish Skeletal Biology. Special issue of J. Applied Ichthyology 34(2), 424–523.

    Journal Publications (past five years)

    Bailleul, A. M., Zheng, W., Horner, J. R., Hall, B. K., Holliday, C. M., and Schweitzer, M. H. (2020). Evidence of proteins, chromosomes and chemical markers of DNA in exceptionally preserved dinosaur cartilage. National Science Review  1–8.   doi: 10.1093/nsr/nwz206

    Rawlinson, K. A., Lapraz, F., Ballister, E. R., Terasaki, M., Rodgers, J., McDowell, R. J., Girstmair, J., Criswell, K. E., Boldogkoi, M., Simpson, F., Goulding, D., Cormie, C., Hall, B. K., Lucas, R. J., and Telford M. J. (2019). Extraocular, rod-like photoreceptors in a flatworm express xenopsin photopigment.  eLife 2019;8:e45465 DOI: 10.7554/eLife.45465

    Witten, P. E., and Hall, B. K. Historical and contemporary knowledge of notochord-based vertebral body development in teleost fishes. J. Appl. Ichthyologyi (in press)

    Prescott, Z. M., and Hall, B. K. Chondrogenesis of the Dentary and the Origination and Distribution of a Kype in the Family Salmonidae. J. Fish Biology (submitted)

    Hall, B.K., and Witten, P. E. (2019) Plasticity and Variation of Skeletal Cells and Tissues and the Evolutionary Development of Actinopterygian Fishes. In Evolution and Development of Fishes. (Z. Johanson, C. Underwood and M. Richter, eds.) pp. 126–143. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

    Hall, B. K. (2018) Germ layers, the neural crest and emergent organization in development and evolution. Genesis 56, (Jun;56(6-7):e23103. doi: 10.1002/dvg.23103

    Seidela, R., Blumberg, M., Pechriggl, E. J., Lyons, K., Hall, B. K., Fratsl, P., Weaver, J. C., and Dean, M. A. (2017) Calcified cartilage or bone? Collagens in the tessellated endoskeletons of cartilaginous fish (sharks and rays). J. Struct. Biol. 200, 54–71.

    Gillis, J. A., and Hall, B. K. (2016) A shared role for sonic hedgehog signalling in patterning skate gill arch appendages and tetrapod limbs. Development 143, 1313–1317.

    Witten, P. E., and Hall, B. K. (2016) Teleost skeletal plasticity: modulation, adaptation and remodelling. Special issue of Copeia devoted to Fishes and Morphology today. Copeia 103, 727–739.

    Bailleul, A. M., Nyssen-Behets, C., Lengelé, B., Hall, B. K., and Horner, J. R. (2015) Chondroid bone in dinosaur embryos and nestlings (Ornithischia: Hadrosauridae): insights on the growth of the skull and the evolution of skeletal tissues. Comptes Rendu Paleoevo 15, 49–64.

    Armin P. Moczek, A. P., Sears, K. E., Stollewerk , A., Wittkopp, P. J., Diggle, P., Dworkin, I., Ledon-Rettig , C., Matus, D. Q., Roth, S., Abouheif, E., Brown, F. D., Chiu, C-H., Cohen, C. S., De Tomaso, A. W., Gilbert, S. F., Hall, Brian K., Love, A., Lyons, D. C., Sanger, T., Smith, J., Specht, C., Vallejo-Marin, M., and Extavour, C. G. (2015) The significance and scope of evolutionary developmental biology: A vision for the 21st century. Evol. & Devel. 17, 198–219.

    Kaul, H., Hall, Brian K., Newby, C., and Ventikos, Y. (2015) Synergistic activity of polarised osteoblasts inside condensations cause their differentiation. Scientific Reports 5, doi:10.1038/srep11838.11838.

    Hall, B. K., and Vickaryous, M. K. (2015) Merrythoughts of the past and present: revisiting the homology of the furcula. In All Animals are Interesting. A Festschrift in Honour of Anthony P. Russell (O. R. P. Belinda-Emonds, G. L. Powell, H. A. Jamniczky, A. M. Bauer and J. Theodor, eds). ed. A. Bauer, et al.), pp. 439–454. BIS-Verlag –Carl von Ossietzky University, Oldenburg Germany.

    Dahdul, W., Balhoff, J., Blackburn, D., Dielh, A., Haendel, M., Hall, B. K., Lapp, M., Lundberg, J., Mungall, C., Ringwald, M., Segerdell, E., Van Slyke C., Vickaryous, M., Westerfield, M., and Mabee, P. (2014) A unified anatomy ontology for the vertebrate skeletal system. Plos One 7(12), e51070.

    Hall, B. K. (2014) Endoskeleton/exo (dermal) skeleton — Mesoderm/neural Crest: two pair of problems and a shifting paradigm. J. Appl. Ichthyol., 30, 608–615.

    Hall, B. K. Foreword: a biologist’s view. In Towards a Theory of Development (A. Minelli, A., and T. Pradeau (Eds), pp. ix-x. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

    Hashimshony, T., Feder, M., Levin, M., Hall, B. K., and Yanai, I. (2014) Spatiotemporal transcriptomics reveals the evolutionary history of the endoderm germ layer. Nature 519, 219–222.

    On line lecture

    "Populations of neural crest cells and craniofacial development" with evolutionary implications, given at symposium at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, October 2000.