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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2016 Aug;39:116-21. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2016.05.001. Epub 2016 May 18.

Cytoskeletal control of axon domain assembly and function.

Author information

1
Department of Neuroscience, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, United States.
2
Department of Neuroscience, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, United States. Electronic address: rasband@bcm.edu.

Abstract

Neurons are organized and connected into functional circuits by axons that conduct action potentials. Many vertebrate axons are myelinated and further subdivided into excitable domains that include the axon initial segment (AIS) and nodes of Ranvier. Nodes of Ranvier regenerate and propagate action potentials, while AIS regulate action potential initiation and neuronal polarity. Two distinct cytoskeletons control axon structure and function: 1) a submembranous ankyrin/spectrin cytoskeleton that clusters ion channels and provides mechanical support, and 2) a microtubule-based cytoskeleton that controls selective trafficking of dendritic and axonal cargoes. Here, we review recent studies that provide significant additional insight into the cytoskeleton-dependent mechanisms controlling the functional organization of axons.

PMID:
27203619
PMCID:
PMC4987246
DOI:
10.1016/j.conb.2016.05.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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