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Nat Neurosci. 2003 Nov;6(11):1169-77. Epub 2003 Oct 5.

Beta-catenin is critical for dendritic morphogenesis.

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1
Nancy Friend Pritzker Laboratory, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, California 94304, USA. yuxiang@stanford.edu

Abstract

Regulated growth and arborization of dendritic processes are critical to the formation of functional neuronal networks. Here we identify beta-catenin as a critical mediator of dendritic morphogenesis. We found that increasing the intracellular levels of beta-catenin and other members of the cadherin/catenin complex, namely N-cadherin and alphaN-catenin, enhances dendritic arborization in rat hippocampal neurons, an effect that does not require Wnt/beta-catenin-dependent transcription. Conversely, proteins that sequester beta-catenin decreased dendritic branch tip number and total dendritic branch length. Enhancement of dendritic growth elicited by depolarization requires beta-catenin and increased Wnt release. These results identify Wnt/beta-catenin signaling as an important mediator of dendritic development and suggest that the intracellular level of the cadherin/catenin complex is a limiting factor during critical stages of dendritic morphogenesis.

PMID:
14528308
DOI:
10.1038/nn1132
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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