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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2005 Feb 1;102(5):1714-8. Epub 2005 Jan 19.

Role of SDF1 chemokine in the development of lateral line efferent and facial motor neurons.

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  • 1Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale E343 Laboratoire de Neurogénétique and Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, cc103, Université Montpellier II, Place E. Bataillon, 34095 Montpellier, France.


Most sensory systems are innervated by efferent neurons as well as by afferent neurons. The efferent innervation modulates the sensitivity of the receptor cells or of the sensory terminals. In the posterior lateral line system of the zebrafish, two efferent nuclei have been described in the hindbrain. Here we examine the development of the efferent neurons. We show that their axons are guided toward the target organ along the lateral line nerve while their cell bodies migrate posteriorward across rhombomeres to achieve their final position in rhombomeres 6/7. This migration depends on the SDF1 chemokine. We show that the migration of motor neurons of the facial nucleus from rhombomere 4 to 6 is also affected in sdf1a morphants (embryos injected with morpholine-conjugated antisense oligonucleotides). We propose that SDF1/CXCR4-mediated cell migration is preferentially associated with movement along the anteroposterior axis of the animal.

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