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J Neuroimmune Pharmacol. 2012 Dec;7(4):774-87. doi: 10.1007/s11481-012-9404-x. Epub 2012 Sep 27.

Wnt signaling in vertebrate neural development and function.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94158, USA.


Members of the Wnt family of secreted signaling proteins influence many aspects of neural development and function. Wnts are required from neural induction and axis formation to axon guidance and synapse development, and even help modulate synapse activity. Wnt proteins activate a variety of downstream signaling pathways and can induce a similar variety of cellular responses, including gene transcription changes and cytoskeletal rearrangements. This review provides an introduction to Wnt signaling pathways and discusses current research on their roles in vertebrate neural development and function.

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