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Neuron. 2009 May 14;62(3):312-26. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2009.03.029.

Alternative functions of core cell cycle regulators in neuronal migration, neuronal maturation, and synaptic plasticity.

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  • 1Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA.


Recent studies have demonstrated that boundaries separating a cycling cell from a postmitotic neuron are not as concrete as expected. Novel and unique physiological functions in neurons have been ascribed for proteins fundamentally required for cell cycle progression and control. These "core" cell cycle regulators serve diverse postmitotic functions that span various developmental stages of a neuron, including neuronal migration, axonal elongation, axon pruning, dendrite morphogenesis, and synaptic maturation and plasticity. In this review, we detail the nonproliferative postmitotic roles that these cell cycle proteins have recently been reported to play, the significance of their expression in neurons, mechanistic insight when available, and future prospects.

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