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Dev Dyn. 2019 Oct 17. doi: 10.1002/dvdy.124. [Epub ahead of print]

An interdisciplinary approach to investigate collective cell migration in neural crest.

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Wolfson Centre for Mathematical Biology, Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford, Woodstock Road, Oxford, United Kingdom.
Stowers Institute for Medical Research, 1000 E 50th Street, Kansas City, MO, USA.
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, KS, USA.


The neural crest serves as a powerful and tractable model paradigm for understanding collective cell migration. The neural crest cell populations are well-known for their long-distance collective migration and contribution to diverse cell lineages during vertebrate development. If neural crest cells fail to reach a target or populate an incorrect location, then improper cell differentiation or uncontrolled cell proliferation can result. A wide range of interdisciplinary studies has been carried out to under- stand the response of neural crest cells to different stimuli and their ability to migrate to distant targets. In this critical commentary, we illustrate how an interdisciplinary collaboration involving experimental and mathematical modelling has led to a deeper understanding of cranial neural crest cell migration. We identify open questions and propose possible ways to start answering some of the challenges arising. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.


collective cell movement; interdisciplinary studies; math- ematical modelling; neural crest


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