Maturation of olfactory neurons

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Sci. Signal.  08 Dec 2015:
Vol. 8, Issue 406, pp. ec366
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aad9939

The sense of smell depends on neurons in the olfactory epithelium to perceive chemical scents. Each neuron specializes with one receptor. Hanchate et al. showed that the one-for-one relationship is not as simple as thought. As new neurons develop to replenish the olfactory epithelium, they initially express several different alleles of olfactory receptors. Then, as each neuron matures, they specialize to express the gene encoding a single receptor.

N. K. Hanchate, K. Kondoh, Z. Lu, D. Kuang, X. Ye, X. Qiu, L. Pachter, C. Trapnell, L. B. Buck, Single-cell transcriptomics reveals receptor transformations during olfactory neurogenesis. Science 350, 1251–1255 (2015). [Abstract] [Full Text]