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The Pantheon is one of the most important architectural monuments of all time. Thought to have been built by Emperor Hadrian in approximately AD 125 on the site of an earlier, Agrippan-era monument, it brilliantly displays the spatial pyrotechnics emblematic of Roman architecture and engineering. The Pantheon gives an up-to-date account of recent research on the best preserved building in the corpus of ancient Roman architecture from the time of its construction to the twenty-first century. Each chapter addresses a specific fundamental issue or period pertaining to the building; together, the essays in this volume shed light on all aspects of the Pantheon's creation, and establish the importance of the history of the building to an understanding of its ancient fabric and heritage, its present state, and its special role in the survival and evolution of ancient architecture in modern Rome.
Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) is the major serum protein during development. AFP is one of the earliest proteins to be synthesised by the embryonic liver. The synthesis of AFP decreases dramatically after birth and only trace amounts are expressed in the adult liver. The tissue distribution of AFP in early human embryogenesis has not been defined. We have studied the expression pattern of AFP mRNA in human and mouse embryos by in situ hybridisation. In humans, AFP is expressed in the hepatic diverticulum at 26 d postovulation as it differentiates from the foregut endoderm (i.e. in the most primitive hepatocytes). It is also expressed in the endoderm of the gastrointestinal tract and in the yolk sac at this age. AFP is subsequently expressed in the mesonephros and transiently in the developing pancreas. In the mouse, no expression of AFP was observed in the mesonephros but other sites of expression were similar. Thus AFP has a distinct temporospatial expression pattern during the embryonic period and this differs between human and mouse species. It is interesting that AFP is expressed by tumours such as primitive gastrointestinal, renal cell and pancreatic tumours as well as those of hepatocyte origin. This distribution reflects the sites of AFP expression during development.