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The transcription factors Abrupt (Ab) and Knot (Kn) act as selectors of distinct dendritic arbor morphologies in two classes of Drosophila sensory neurons, termed class I and class IV, respectively. We performed binding-site mapping and transcriptional profiling of these isolated neurons. Their profiles were similarly enriched in cell-type-specific enhancers of genes implicated in neural development. We identified a total of 429 target genes, of which 56 were common to Ab and Kn; these targets included genes necessary to shape dendritic arbors in either or both of the two sensory subtypes. Furthermore, a common target gene, encoding the cell adhesion molecule Ten-m, was expressed more strongly in class I than class IV, and this differential was critical to the class-selective directional control of dendritic branch sprouting or extension. Our analyses illustrate how differentiating neurons employ distinct and shared repertoires of gene expression to produce class-selective morphological traits. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Yukako Hattori, Tadao Usui, Daisuke Satoh, Sanefumi Moriyama, Kohei Shimono, Takehiko Itoh, Katsuhiko Shirahige, Tadashi Uemura. Sensory-neuron subtype-specific transcriptional programs controlling dendrite morphogenesis: genome-wide analysis of Abrupt and Knot/Collier. Developmental cell. 2013 Dec 9;27(5):530-44

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PMID: 24290980

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