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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2013 Dec;23(6):914-20. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2013.06.005. Epub 2013 Jul 3.

Intrinsic and extrinsic control of oligodendrocyte development.

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  • 1Department of Neurobiology, Stanford University, Fairchild Building D205, 299 Campus Drive West, Stanford, CA 94305, United States. Electronic address: brad.zuchero@gmail.com.

Abstract

Oligodendrocytes (OLs) are the myelinating glia of the central nervous system. Myelin is essential for the rapid propagation of action potentials as well as for metabolic support of axons, and its loss in demyelinating diseases like multiple sclerosis has profound pathological consequences. The many steps in the development of OLs - from the specification of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) during embryonic development to their differentiation into OLs that myelinate axons - are under tight regulation. Here we discuss recent advances in understanding how these steps of OL development are controlled intrinsically by transcription factors and chromatin remodeling and extrinsically by signaling molecules and neuronal activity. We also discuss how knowledge of these pathways is now allowing us to take steps toward generating patient-specific OPCs for disease modeling and myelin repair.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
23831087
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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