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PLoS One. 2014 Feb 6;9(2):e86025. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0086025. eCollection 2014.

Neural crest-derived mesenchymal cells require Wnt signaling for their development and drive invagination of the telencephalic midline.

Author information

1
Department of Neurology, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States of America.
2
Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of California at Davis, Davis, California, United States of America ; Institute for Pediatric Regenerative Medicine, Shriners Hospitals for Children, Sacramento, California, United States of America.
3
Department of Neurology, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States of America ; Program in Neuroscience, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States of America ; Program in Developmental Stem Cell Biology, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States of America ; Eli and Edythe Broad Center of Regeneration Medicine and Stem Cell Research and University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States of America.

Abstract

Embryonic neural crest cells contribute to the development of the craniofacial mesenchyme, forebrain meninges and perivascular cells. In this study, we investigated the function of ß-catenin signaling in neural crest cells abutting the dorsal forebrain during development. In the absence of ß-catenin signaling, neural crest cells failed to expand in the interhemispheric region and produced ectopic smooth muscle cells instead of generating dermal and calvarial mesenchyme. In contrast, constitutive expression of stabilized ß-catenin in neural crest cells increased the number of mesenchymal lineage precursors suggesting that ß-catenin signaling is necessary for the expansion of neural crest-derived mesenchymal cells. Interestingly, the loss of neural crest-derived mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) leads to failure of telencephalic midline invagination and causes ventricular system defects. This study shows that ß-catenin signaling is required for the switch of neural crest cells to MSCs and mediates the expansion of MSCs to drive the formation of mesenchymal structures of the head. Furthermore, loss of these structures causes striking defects in forebrain morphogenesis.

PMID:
24516524
PMCID:
PMC3916303
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0086025
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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