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Mol Cell Neurosci. 2001 Jul;18(1):26-43.

Age-dependent effects of secreted Semaphorins 3A, 3F, and 3E on developing hippocampal axons: in vitro effects and phenotype of Semaphorin 3A (-/-) mice.

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  • 1Department of Cell Biology, University of Barcelona, E-08028, Spain.


We studied the role of Semaphorins in the formation of hippocampal connections at embryonic and early postnatal stages. We show that the embryonic entorhinal cortex has a repulsive effect on embryonic hippocampal axons that disappears gradually at postnatal stages. Such chemorepulsion is blocked by Neuropilin-1 and -2 blocking antibodies. However, at perinatal stages, the inner layers of the entorhinal cortex attract CA1 axons. At these stages, Sema3A and Sema3F bind commissural and entorhinal axons. Sema3A and Sema3F repel hippocampal axons at E14-P2, but not at E13. A similar spatiotemporal pattern of chemorepulsion is observed for Sema3A on entorhinal axons, in contrast to Sema3F, which repels these axons only at postnatal ages. Sema3E also repels hippocampal axons but exclusively at E14. We show that Sema3A and Sema3F can induce the collapse of hippocampal growth cones and that membrane-bound Sema3A and Sema3F can guide hippocampal axons in the stripe assay. In sema3A (-/-) mice, the entorhinohippocampal projection is largely normal although single axons innervate aberrantly the stratum radiatum and the hilus. Thus, the chemorepulsion evoked by Sema3A, Sema3E, and Sema3F is dynamically regulated in the developing hippocampal formation.

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