The freshwater polyp provides a potent model system for investigating the conditions that promote wound healing, reactivation of a developmental process and, ultimately, regeneration of an amputated body part. polyps can also be dissociated to the single cell level and can regenerate a complete body axis from aggregates, behaving as natural organoids. In recent years, the ability to exploit has been expanded with the advent of new live-imaging approaches, genetic manipulations that include stable transgenesis, gene silencing and genome editing, and the accumulation of high-throughput omics data. In this Primer, we provide an overview of as a model system for studying regeneration, highlighting recent results that question the classical self-enhancement and long-range inhibition model supposed to drive regeneration. We underscore the need for integrative explanations incorporating biochemical as well as mechanical signalling.
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