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Neuroscience. 1994 Feb;58(4):671-82.

The survival of developing neurons: a review of afferent control.

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Instituto de Biofisica da UFRJ, Cidade Universitaria, Brazil.


Developmental cell death is a major event of neurogenesis, and emphasis has systematically been placed on the roles of either the peripheral targets or central postsynaptic neurons in the control of neuronal survival. In this article, the main types of experimental design used to test the control of neuronal death by the afferent supply are compared with analogous data indicating neurotrophic support by the targets. It is argued that targets and afferents may have equivalent roles and interact in the control of neuron numbers during development of the vertebrate nervous system. Possible mechanisms of anterograde trophic control include contact-mediated cell interactions, activity-dependent processes mediated by neurotransmitters or neuromodulators, modulation of the levels of cytoplasmic free calcium and the involvement of neurotrophic factors.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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