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Cold Spring Harb Perspect Biol. 2010 Feb;2(2):a001834. doi: 10.1101/cshperspect.a001834.

Guiding neuronal cell migrations.

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Instituto de Neurociencias, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas and Universidad Miguel Hernández, Sant Joan d'Alacant 03550, Spain.


Neuronal migration is, along with axon guidance, one of the fundamental mechanisms underlying the wiring of the brain. As other organs, the nervous system has acquired the ability to grow both in size and complexity by using migration as a strategy to position cell types from different origins into specific coordinates, allowing for the generation of brain circuitries. Guidance of migrating neurons shares many features with axon guidance, from the use of substrates to the specific cues regulating chemotaxis. There are, however, important differences in the cell biology of these two processes. The most evident case is nucleokinesis, which is an essential component of migration that needs to be integrated within the guidance of the cell. Perhaps more surprisingly, the cellular mechanisms underlying the response of the leading process of migrating cells to guidance cues might be different to those involved in growth cone steering, at least for some neuronal populations.

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