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Cerebellum. 2018 Feb;17(1):12-16. doi: 10.1007/s12311-017-0887-0.

The Ferdinando Rossi Memorial Lecture: Zones and Stripes-Pattern Formation in the Cerebellum.

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Department of Cell Biology & Anatomy and Hotchkiss Brain Institute, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB, T2N 4NI, Canada.


The cerebellum has a complex architecture-highly reproducible and conserved through evolution. Cerebellar architecture is organized around the Purkinje cell. Purkinje cells in the mouse cerebellum come in many different subtypes, identifiable by expression markers, sensitivity to mutation, etc. These are organized first into five "transverse zones," each of which is further subdivided into dozens of reproducible "stripes." This arrangement serves as the scaffolding to organize afferent topography and restrict the distribution of excitatory and inhibitory interneurons. This brief review will survey some of the mechanisms that lead to the formation of this elaborate pattern during cerebellar development. Pattern formation in the cerebellar cortex is a multistage process that begins early in development with the generation of the various Purkinje cell subtypes, and matures through the dispersal of Purkinje cell clusters into stripes. Two developmental processes will be discussed in particular: the mechanisms that lead to Purkinje cell subtype specification (i.e., how different kinds of Purkinje cells are made) and the role played by Purkinje cell migration in pattern formation (i.e., how these Purkinje cell subtypes end up in a reproducible array of stripes).


Development; Purkinje cells; Stripes; Transverse zones; Zebrins

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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