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Development. 1996 Feb;122(2):501-7.

Regulative interactions in zebrafish neural crest.

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Institute of Neuroscience, University of Oregon, Eugene 97403-1254, USA.


Zebrafish trunk neural crest cells that migrate at different times have different fates: early-migrating crest cells produce dorsal root ganglion neurons as well as glia and pigment cells, while late-migrating crest cells produce only non-neuronal derivatives. When presumptive early-migrating crest cells were individually transplanted into hosts such that they migrated late, they retained the ability to generate neurons. In contrast, late-migrating crest cells transplanted under the same conditions never generated neurons. These results suggest that, prior to migration, neural crest cells have intrinsic biases in the types of derivatives they will produce. Transplantation of presumptive early-migrating crest cells does not result in production of dorsal root ganglion neurons under all conditions suggesting that these cells require appropriate environmental factors to express these intrinsic biases. When early-migrating crest cells are ablated, late-migrating crest cells gain the ability to produce neurons, even when they migrate on their normal schedule. Interactions among neural crest cells may thus regulate the types of derivatives neural crest cells produce, by establishing or maintaining intrinsic differences between individual cells.

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