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Dev Dyn. 2016 May;245(5):580-9. doi: 10.1002/dvdy.24401. Epub 2016 Apr 6.

Extracellular matrix couples the convergence movements of mesoderm and neural plate during the early stages of neurulation.

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Laboratory of Developmental Biology, Instituto de Ciencias Marinas y Limnológicas, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Austral de Chile, Campus Isla Teja s/n, Valdivia, Chile.
MRC Centre for Developmental Neurobiology, King's College London, New Hunt's House, 4th Floor, Guy's Hospital Campus, London, United Kingdom.
Program in Computational Biology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, New York, USA.



During the initial stages zebrafish neurulation, neural plate cells undergo highly coordinated movements before they assemble into a multicellular solid neural rod. We have previously identified that the underlying mesoderm is critical to ensure such coordination and generate correct neural tube organization. However, how intertissue coordination is achieved in vivo during zebrafish neural tube morphogenesis is unknown.


In this work, we use quantitative live imaging to study the coordinated movements of neural ectoderm and mesoderm during dorsal tissue convergence. We show the extracellular matrix components laminin and fibronectin that lie between mesoderm and neural plate act to couple the movements of neural plate and mesoderm during early stages of neurulation and to maintain the close apposition of these two tissues.


Our study highlights the importance of the extracellular matrix proteins laminin and libronectin in coupling the movements and spatial proximity of mesoderm and neuroectoderm during the morphogenetic movements of neurulation. Developmental Dynamics 245:580-589, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.


extracellular matrix; morphogenesis; neurulation; zebrafish

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