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    Cell specification in the ventral spinal cord is a well-studied model system to understand how tissue pattern develops in response to a morphogen gradient. Ventral cell types including motor neurons (MNs) are induced in the neural tube in response to graded Sonic Hedgehog (Shh) signaling. We performed a forward genetic screen in the mouse that incorporated a GFP-expressing transgene to visualize MNs to identify genes regulating ventral patterning. Here we contrast the neural patterning phenotypes of two mouse lines carrying induced mutations in ciliary trafficking genes. We show that a hypomorphic mutation in the gene Tubby-like protein 3 (Tulp3) resulted in a dorsal expansion of MNs consistent with an up-regulation of Shh signaling. Interestingly, patterning defects in Tulp3 mutants were restricted to posterior regions of the spinal cord as patterning was similar to WT in the anterior spinal cord. In contrast, a mutation in the ciliary trafficking gene cytoplasmic dynein 2 heavy chain 1 (Dync2h1), led to a complete loss of MNs in anterior regions of the spinal cord, indicating a strong down-regulation of Shh signaling. However, this severe phenotype was restricted to the cervical region as MNs developed posteriorly. Mutations in cilia trafficking genes affect Shh-dependent signaling in the neural tube differentially along the anterior-posterior (A-P) axis in a process that is not understood. Copyright © 2020 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


    Emilie Legué, Karel F Liem. Mutations in Ciliary Trafficking Genes affect Sonic Hedgehog-dependent Neural Tube Patterning Differentially along the Anterior-Posterior Axis. Neuroscience. 2020 Dec 01;450:3-14

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    PMID: 32682825

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