Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Curr Opin Neurobiol. 1996 Feb;6(1):104-12.

Mechanism of synapse disassembly at the developing neuromuscular junction.

Author information

Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, Washington University School of Medicine, St Louis, Missouri 63110, USA.


Throughout the developing nervous system of higher vertebrates, synaptic connections are concurrently being established and eliminated. The consequence of this synaptic remodeling is that axons strengthen their connections with some targets while completely disconnecting from other postsynaptic cells. The transition from multiple to single axonal innervation of skeletal muscle fibers is the most accessible example of this developmental reorganization. In muscle, the elimination of axonal input appears to be driven by a protracted competition between different axons co-innervating the same junction, with the muscle fiber as intermediary. Asynchronous synaptic activity may be the factor that differentiates the competing inputs. In some circumstances, synapses can also be lost in ways that are independent of activity. Similarities between activity-dependent and activity-independent synapse elimination provide insights into mechanisms underlying developmental synaptic reorganization.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center