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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2016 Aug;39:86-92. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2016.04.010. Epub 2016 Apr 30.

Actin cytoskeleton in dendritic spine development and plasticity.

Author information

1
Department of Cell Biology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, United States.
2
Department of Cell Biology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, United States; Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30322, United States. Electronic address: james.zheng@emory.edu.

Abstract

Synapses are the basic unit of neuronal communication and their disruption is associated with many neurological disorders. Significant progress has been made towards understanding the molecular and genetic regulation of synapse formation, modulation, and dysfunction, but the underlying cellular mechanisms remain incomplete. The actin cytoskeleton not only provides the structural foundation for synapses, but also regulates a diverse array of cellular activities underlying synaptic function. Here we will discuss the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton in dendritic spines, the postsynaptic compartment of excitatory synapses. We will focus on a select number of actin regulatory processes, highlighting recent advances, the complexity of crosstalk between different pathways, and the challenges of understanding their precise impact on the structure and function of synapses.

PMID:
27138585
PMCID:
PMC4987222
DOI:
10.1016/j.conb.2016.04.010
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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