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Vertebrate brains exhibit vast amounts of anatomical diversity. In particular, the elaborate and complex nervous system of amniotes is correlated with the size of their behavioral repertoire. However, the evolutionary mechanisms underlying species-specific brain morphogenesis remain elusive. In this review we introduce reptiles as a new model organism for(More)
In the brain, enormous numbers of neurons have functional individuality and distinct circuit specificities. Clustered Protocadherins (Pcdhs), diversified cell-surface proteins, are stochastically expressed by alternative promoter choice and affect dendritic arborization in individual neurons. Here we found that the Pcdh promoters are differentially(More)
The generation of complex neural circuits depends on the correct wiring of neurons with diverse individual characteristics. To understand the complexity of the nervous system, the molecular mechanisms for specifying the identity and diversity of individual neurons must be elucidated. The clustered protocadherins (Pcdh) in mammals consist of approximately 50(More)
Caenorhabditis elegans is an excellent model for morphogenetic research. However, little information is available on the structure of cell-surface glycans in C. elegans, although several lines of evidence have suggested a role for these glycans in cell-cell interactions during development. In this study, we analyzed N-glycan structures. Oligosaccharides(More)
The protocadherin-alpha (Pcdh-alpha) gene encodes diverse transmembrane proteins that are differentially expressed in individual neurons in the vertebrate central nervous system. The Pcdh-alpha genomic structure contains variable first exons, each regulated by its own promoter. Here, we investigated the effect of DNA methylation on gene regulation in the(More)
The cadherin-related neuronal receptor (CNR)/protocadherin (Pcdh) alpha family is one of the diverse protocadherin families expressed in developing axons. We observed a strong axonal expression of these proteins at late embryonic and early postnatal stages corresponding to regions where fibers had not yet been myelinated. We therefore followed the postnatal(More)
The mouse protocadherin (Pcdh) clusters, Pcdh-alpha, -beta, and -gamma, are located on chromosome 18. Many polymorphic variations are found in the Pcdh-alpha genes in wild-derived and laboratory mouse strains. In comparing the expression levels of Pcdh-alpha isoforms among several strains, we observed lower expression levels of Pcdh-alpha9 in BLG2 and(More)
We developed a convenient method for purification of PA-oligosaccharides to remove contaminants originating from natural fluorescent materials, and excess reagents as well as by-products of tagging reactions in glycan analysis. The method, using a C18-cartridge, is simple and powerful to remove them. Several examples of experiments that showed the(More)
The trigeminal circuit relays somatosensory input from the face into the central nervous system. In central nuclei, the spatial arrangement of neurons reproduces the physical distribution of peripheral receptors, thus generating a somatotopic facial map during development. In mice, the ophthalmic, maxillary, and mandibular trigeminal nerve branches maintain(More)
Some mutants of Caenorhabditis elegans show altered patterns of ectopic binding with wheat germ agglutinin (WGA). Some of these mutants also have defects of morphogenesis and movement during development. To clarify the structures of WGA-ligands in C. elegans that may be involved in developmental events, we have analyzed glycan structures capable of binding(More)