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Cell Rep. 2018 Jun 5;23(10):2928-2941. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2018.05.025.

Roof Plate-Derived Radial Glial-like Cells Support Developmental Growth of Rapidly Adapting Mechanoreceptor Ascending Axons.

Author information

1
Department of Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
2
Department of Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA; Shriners Hospital's Pediatric Research Center (Center for Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair), Lewis Katz School of Medicine, Temple University, 3500 N. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19140, USA.
3
Seattle Children's Hospital Research Institute, Center for Integrative Brain Research, Seattle, WA 98105, USA.
4
Department of Biostatistics, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
5
Department of Neurology, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.
6
STAAR Surgical, Monrovia, CA 91016, USA.
7
Instituto de Neurociencias de Alicante (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas-Universidad Miguel Hernández, CSIC-UMH), Campus San Juan, Av. Ramón y Cajal s/n, Alicante 03550, Spain.
8
Shriners Hospital's Pediatric Research Center (Center for Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair), Lewis Katz School of Medicine, Temple University, 3500 N. Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19140, USA.
9
Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, Health Science Center, University of Tennessee, Memphis, TN 38163, USA.
10
Seattle Children's Hospital Research Institute, Center for Integrative Brain Research, Seattle, WA 98105, USA. Electronic address: kathleen.millen@seattlechildren.org.
11
Department of Neuroscience, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA. Electronic address: luow@pennmedicine.upenn.edu.

Abstract

Spinal cord longitudinal axons comprise some of the longest axons in our body. However, mechanisms that drive this extra long-distance axonal growth are largely unclear. We found that ascending axons of rapidly adapting (RA) mechanoreceptors closely abut a previously undescribed population of roof plate-derived radial glial-like cells (RGLCs) in the spinal cord dorsal column, which form a network of processes enriched with growth-promoting factors. In dreher mutant mice that lack RGLCs, the lengths of ascending RA mechanoreceptor axon branches are specifically reduced, whereas their descending and collateral branches, and other dorsal column and sensory pathways, are largely unaffected. Because the number and intrinsic growth ability of RA mechanoreceptors are normal in dreher mice, our data suggest that RGLCs provide critical non-cell autonomous growth support for the ascending axons of RA mechanoreceptors. Together, our work identifies a developmental mechanism specifically required for long-range spinal cord longitudinal axons.

KEYWORDS:

development; dorsal column; longitudinal axon growth; radial glia like cells; rapidly adapting mechanoreceptors; roof plate; spinal cord

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