Editors' ChoiceDevelopmental Biology

Brains Take Shape

Science's STKE  20 Mar 2001:
Vol. 2001, Issue 74, pp. tw10
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2001.74.tw10

What gives a tissue or organ its stereotypic size, shape, and orientation? Experiments by Agarwala et al. now help to elucidate the molecular mechanism underlying the formation of different brain tissues. They altered the size, shape, and orientation of the Sonic Hedgehog morphogen in the developing chick brain and show that this signaling molecule can control the size, shape, and orientation of characteristic brain structures.

S. Agarwala, T. A. Sanders, C. W. Ragsdale, Sonic hedgehog control of size and shape in midbrain pattern formation. Science 291, 2147-2150 (2001). [Abstract] [Full Text]