Editors' ChoiceNeuroscience

Developing Neurons Make the Cut

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Sci. Signal.  14 Jan 2014:
Vol. 7, Issue 308, pp. ec14
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2005062

Neurons in the developing central nervous system of vertebrates derive from cells adjacent to the ventricles that then proliferate and differentiate to populate the brain. As one of these cells begins to differentiate, the cell nucleus migrates toward its new residence, away from the ventricle surface, and the cell stretches out. At some point, like any maturing adolescent, the cell has to leave home. Das and Storey (see the Perspective by Tozer and Morin) show that instead of letting go and drawing the trailing process up into the migrating cell, the cell cuts off and discards its first roots. The abscission process leaves behind the primary cilium and any signaling systems localized to the cilium.

R. M. Das, K. G. Storey, Apical abscission alters cell polarity and dismantles the primary cilium during neurogenesis. Science 343, 200–204 (2014). [Abstract] [Full Text]

S. Tozer, X. Morin, Young neurons sever ties to the parental niche. Science 343, 146–147 (2014). [Abstract] [Full Text]