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Anat Embryol (Berl). 1992;185(2):169-74.

Deceleration and acceleration in the rate of posterior neuropore closure during neurulation in the curly tail (ct) mouse embryo.

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  • 1Department of Anatomy and Embryology, National University of Limburg, Maastricht, The Netherlands.


Curly tail (ct) is a mouse mutant producing spinal neural tube defects as a result of delayed closure of the posterior neuropore (PNP). The purpose of the present study was to determine in ct/ct embryos the time of onset of the delay in PNP closure, and the pattern of this closure, as well as to study the possibility that reopening of the neural tube occurs. Normal spinal neurulation was studied in non-mutant Swiss (Sw) embryos. In the latter, the average PNP length diminished steadily between the 7- and 25-somite stages, and then decreased more rapidly, indicating an acceleration of closure rate, until the 30- to 32-somite stage, when all PNPs closed. PNP width decreased steadily between the stages of 7 and 30 somites. In ct/ct embryos the average PNP length showed a slight increase between the stage of 23 to 28 somites, indicating a temporary deceleration of closure rate, and the range of PNP sizes increased markedly. This was followed by a decrease in PNP length until the 37-somite stage, indicating an acceleration of closure rate. From the stage of 32 somites onwards, the proportion of embryos with closed PNPs gradually increased to 90%. The population of ct/ct embryos was subdivided. Embryos with large PNPs showed a marked deceleration of closure rate during a period of 11 somite stages, followed by a brief but very high acceleration of closure rate.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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