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Neuron. 2004 Apr 22;42(2):213-23.

Conserved roles for Slit and Robo proteins in midline commissural axon guidance.

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  • 1Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Biological Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.

Abstract

In Drosophila, Slit at the midline activates Robo receptors on commissural axons, thereby repelling them out of the midline into distinct longitudinal tracts on the contralateral side of the central nervous system. In the vertebrate spinal cord, Robo1 and Robo2 are expressed by commissural neurons, whereas all three Slit homologs are expressed at the ventral midline. Previous analysis of Slit1;Slit2 double mutant spinal cords failed to reveal a defect in commissural axon guidance. We report here that when all six Slit alleles are removed, many commissural axons fail to leave the midline, while others recross it. In addition, Robo1 and Robo2 single mutants show guidance defects that reveal a role for these two receptors in guiding commissural axons to different positions within the ventral and lateral funiculi. These results demonstrate a key role for Slit/Robo signaling in midline commissural axon guidance in vertebrates.

PMID:
15091338
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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