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MCAT Biology – Germ Layers

  • by Kerry Goldstein
  • Mar 18, 2015
  • MCAT Biology, MCAT Blog, MCAT Question of the Day

The lining of the digestive tract and the respiratory tract develops from which germ layer?

I. Endoderm
II. Mesoderm
III. Ectoderm

a) I only

b) II only

c) III only

d) I and II

 

Explanation
The lining of the digestive tract and the respiratory tract develops from the endoderm. As a rule of thumb for the MCAT, think of the fetus developing from a tube. Skin and nervous systems develop from ectoderm (outside of tube), digestive tract and respiratory tract from endoderm (inside of tube), and cardiovascular, skeletal, and muscle tissues develop from mesoderm (in-between outside and inside of tube). On MCAT questions, tissues will almost always develop from one germ-layer only.

I. Endoderm
II. Mesoderm
III. Ectoderm

a) I only, correct.

b) II only, incorrect.

c) III only, incorrect.

d) I and II, incorrect.

 

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