Lateralization of brain and behaviour is now considered a common feature for all vertebrates, from agnathans and fish to birds and mammals. An important place in this field of research is occupied by amphibians and reptiles - the key classes to understand evolution of lateralization of behaviour and its relations to structure and development. This special issue of Laterality comprises a collection of papers, presented at the International Symposium on Behavioural and Morphological Asymmetries in Amphibians and Reptiles - the first of its kind. This is the first attempt to integrate and overview the works in the young field of study of lateralization in herpetological subjects, which is only about five years old. The issue is focused on amphibians (as reptiles are less involved so far) and specifically on the relations of behavioural and morphological directional asymmetries. It might serve as a starting point for future meetings and raise a number of evolutionary and developmental questions, directing the ways of prospective research. The issue consists of six review and original papers written by invited experts in the field. It provides references to almost all the available literature on the subject. Being a 'state-of-the-art' book, the issue is suitable for both advanced students and researchers specializing in behavioural sciences, neuroscience, developmental biology and morphology, who might wish to join the study of asymmetry in lower tetrapods for deeper insights into its evolution, development and function.
Y.B. Malashichev, Asymmetries in Amphibians: A Review of Morphology and Behaviour. L.J. Rogers, Lateralized Brain Function in Anurans: Comparison to Lateralization in Other Vertebrates. R.J. Wassersug, M. Yamashita, Assessing and Interpreting Lateralized Behaviour in Anuran Larvae. A. Robins, L.J. Rogers, Limb Preference and Skeletal Asymmetry in the Cane Toad, Bufo Marinus (Anura: Bufonidae). H. Seligman, Behavioural and Morphological Asymmetries in Hindlimbs of Hoplodactylus Duvaucelii (Lacertilia: Gekkonomorpha: Gekkota: Diplodactylinae). E. Marzona, C. Giacoma, Display Lateralization in the Courtship Behaviour of the Alpine Newt (Triturus Alpestris).