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Trends Neurosci. 2012 Sep;35(9):565-73. doi: 10.1016/j.tins.2012.05.004. Epub 2012 Jun 15.

Cell fate determination in the vertebrate retina.

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Vision Program, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, 501 Smyth Road, Ottawa, Ont, K1H 8L6, Canada.


The vertebrate retina is a well-characterized and tractable model for studying neurogenesis. Retinal neurons and glia are generated in a conserved sequence from a pool of multipotent progenitor cells, and numerous cell fate determinants for the different classes of retinal cell types have been identified. Here, we summarize several recent developments in the field that have advanced understanding of the regulation of multipotentiality and temporal competence of progenitors. We also discuss recent insights into the relative influence of lineage-based versus stochastic modes of cell fate determination. Enhancing and integrating knowledge of the molecular and genetic machinery underlying retinal development is critically important for understanding not only normal developmental mechanisms, but also therapeutic interventions aimed at restoring vision loss.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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