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Nat Neurosci. 2005 Aug;8(8):1002-12. Epub 2005 Jul 24.

Multiple origins of Cajal-Retzius cells at the borders of the developing pallium.

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Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique-Unité Mixte de Recherche 8542, Ecole Normale Supérieure, 46 rue d'Ulm, 75005 Paris, France.


Cajal-Retzius cells are critical in cortical lamination, but very little is known about their origin and development. The homeodomain transcription factor Dbx1 is expressed in restricted progenitor domains of the developing pallium: the ventral pallium (VP) and the septum. Using genetic tracing and ablation experiments in mice, we show that two subpopulations of Reelin(+) Cajal-Retzius cells are generated from Dbx1-expressing progenitors. VP- and septum-derived Reelin(+) neurons differ in their onset of appearance, migration routes, destination and expression of molecular markers. Together with reported data supporting the generation of Reelin(+) cells in the cortical hem, our results show that Cajal-Retzius cells are generated at least at three focal sites at the borders of the developing pallium and are redistributed by tangential migration. Our data also strongly suggest that distinct Cajal-Retzius subtypes exist and that their presence in different territories of the developing cortex might contribute to region-specific properties.

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