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Science. 2002 Dec 6;298(5600):1959-64.

Molecular mechanisms of axon guidance.

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Research Institute of Molecular Pathology, Dr. Bohr-gasse 7, A-1030 Vienna, Austria.

Erratum in

  • Science. 2003 Jan 24;299(5606):515.


Axons are guided along specific pathways by attractive and repulsive cues in the extracellular environment. Genetic and biochemical studies have led to the identification of highly conserved families of guidance molecules, including netrins, Slits, semaphorins, and ephrins. Guidance cues steer axons by regulating cytoskeletal dynamics in the growth cone through signaling pathways that are still only poorly understood. Elaborate regulatory mechanisms ensure that a given cue elicits the right response from the right axons at the right time but is otherwise ignored. With such regulatory mechanisms in place, a relatively small number of guidance factors can be used to generate intricate patterns of neuronal wiring.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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