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Cell division, cell motility and the formation and maintenance of specialized structures in differentiated cells depend directly on the regulated dynamics of the actin cytoskeleton. To understand the mechanisms of these basic cellular processes, the signalling pathways that link external signals to the regulation of the actin cytoskeleton need to be(More)
Motor function depends on the formation of selective connections between sensory and motor neurons and their muscle targets. The molecular basis of the specificity inherent in this sensory-motor circuit remains unclear. We show that motor neuron pools and subsets of muscle sensory afferents can be defined by the expression of ETS genes, notably PEA3 and(More)
The connections formed between sensory and motor neurons (MNs) play a critical role in the control of motor behavior. During development, the axons of proprioceptive sensory neurons project into the spinal cord and form both direct and indirect connections with MNs. Two ETS transcription factors, ER81 and PEA3, are expressed by developing proprioceptive(More)
Two ETS transcription factors of the Pea3 subfamily are induced in subpopulations of dorsal root ganglion (DRG) sensory and spinal motor neurons by target-derived factors. Their expression controls late aspects of neuronal differentiation such as target invasion and branching. Here, we show that the late onset of ETS gene expression is an essential(More)
Cajal-Retzius cells are critical in cortical lamination, but very little is known about their origin and development. The homeodomain transcription factor Dbx1 is expressed in restricted progenitor domains of the developing pallium: the ventral pallium (VP) and the septum. Using genetic tracing and ablation experiments in mice, we show that two(More)
The homeobox gene Hb9, like its close relative MNR2, is expressed selectively by motor neurons (MNs) in the developing vertebrate CNS. In embryonic chick spinal cord, the ectopic expression of MNR2 or Hb9 is sufficient to trigger MN differentiation and to repress the differentiation of an adjacent population of V2 interneurons. Here, we provide genetic(More)
The patterning of skeletal muscle is thought to depend upon signals provided by motor neurons. We show that AChR gene expression and AChR clusters are concentrated in the central region of embryonic skeletal muscle in the absence of innervation. Neurally derived Agrin is dispensable for this early phase of AChR expression, but MuSK, a receptor tyrosine(More)
The initial stages of pancreatic development occur early during mammalian embryogenesis, but the genes governing this process remain largely unknown. The homeodomain protein Pdx1 is expressed in the developing pancreatic anlagen from the approximately 10-somite stage, and mutations in the gene Pdx1 prevent the development of the pancreas. The initial stages(More)
The projection of developing axons to their targets is a crucial step in the assembly of neuronal circuits. In the spinal cord, the differentiation of specific motor neuron pools is associated with the expression of ETS class transcription factors, notably PEA3 and ER81. Their initial expression coincides with the arrival of motor axons in the vicinity of(More)
MLP is a LIM-only protein of terminally differentiated striated muscle cells, where it accumulates at actin-based structures involved in cytoarchitecture organization. To assess its role in muscle differentiation, we disrupted the MLP gene in mice. MLP (-/-) mice developed dilated cardiomyopathy with hypertrophy and heart failure after birth.(More)