We describe and illustrate a set of morphological landmarks for classifying mouse embryos by gross morphology from before gastrulation to the beginning of organogenesis. These landmarks are visible at the resolution of the dissecting microscope in embryos that are intact except for reflexion of Reichert's membrane. Adoption of these criteria should facilitate interpretation of both the expression patterns of genes and the consequences of experimental manipulation of embryos during early postimplantation development.
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