Editors' ChoiceNeurobiology

Turn Signals

Science's STKE  13 Mar 2001:
Vol. 2001, Issue 73, pp. tw5
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2001.73.tw5

Growth cones at the tips of extending neurites dictate axonal guidance by translating extracellular cues into intracellular signals that then determine the appropriate direction to turn. Gomez et al. report that localized calcium transients occur in filopodia that extend from the growth cones. The frequency and amplitude of these calcium transients depend on the extracellular substrate, implicating the involvement of integrins in regulating the turning process. These calcium transients also appear to propagate back to the growth cone and to affect global calcium dynamics.

T. M. Gomez, E. Robles, M.-m. Poo, N. C. Spitzer, Filopodial calcium transients promote substrate-dependent growth cone turning. Science 291, 1983-1987 (2001). [Abstract] [Full Text]