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Dev Biol. 2019 Aug 31. pii: S0012-1606(17)30472-4. doi: 10.1016/j.ydbio.2019.08.022. [Epub ahead of print]

Transcriptional mechanisms of motor neuron development in vertebrates and invertebrates.

Author information

1
Department of Neurobiology, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, 60637, USA; The Grossman Institute for Neuroscience, Quantitative Biology and Human Behavior, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA.
2
Department of Neurobiology, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, 60637, USA; The Grossman Institute for Neuroscience, Quantitative Biology and Human Behavior, The University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA. Electronic address: pkratsios@uchicago.edu.

Abstract

Across phylogeny, motor neurons (MNs) represent a single but often remarkably diverse neuronal class composed of a multitude of subtypes required for vital behaviors, such as eating and locomotion. Over the past decades, seminal studies in multiple model organisms have advanced our molecular understanding of the early steps of MN development, such as progenitor specification and acquisition of MN subtype identity, by revealing key roles for several evolutionarily conserved transcription factors. However, very little is known about the molecular strategies that allow distinct MN subtypes to maintain their identity- and function-defining features during the late steps of development and postnatal life. Here, we provide an overview of invertebrate and vertebrate studies on transcription factor-based strategies that control early and late steps of MN development, aiming to highlight evolutionarily conserved gene regulatory principles necessary for establishment and maintenance of neuronal identity.

PMID:
31479648
DOI:
10.1016/j.ydbio.2019.08.022
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