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Development. 2012 Jan;139(2):231-43. doi: 10.1242/dev.067082.

Palatogenesis: morphogenetic and molecular mechanisms of secondary palate development.

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Department of Cell and Tissue Biology and Program in Craniofacial and Mesenchymal Biology, University of California at San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94143, USA.

Erratum in

  • Development. 2012 Feb;139(4):828.


Mammalian palatogenesis is a highly regulated morphogenetic process during which the embryonic primary and secondary palatal shelves develop as outgrowths from the medial nasal and maxillary prominences, respectively, remodel and fuse to form the intact roof of the oral cavity. The complexity of control of palatogenesis is reflected by the common occurrence of cleft palate in humans. Although the embryology of the palate has long been studied, the past decade has brought substantial new knowledge of the genetic control of secondary palate development. Here, we review major advances in the understanding of the morphogenetic and molecular mechanisms controlling palatal shelf growth, elevation, adhesion and fusion, and palatal bone formation.

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