A functional scaffold of CNS neurons for the vertebrates: The developing Xenopus laevis spinal cord (review)

Alan Roberts, Wenchang Li, Steve Soffe

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article reviewpeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

In young and developing amphibians and fish the spinal cord is functional but remarkably simple compared to the adult. Is the pattern of neurons and their connections common across at least these lower vertebrates? Does this basic pattern extend into the brainstem? Could the development of simple functioning neuronal networks depend on very basic rules of connectivity and act as pioneer networks providing a substrate for the development of more complex and subtle networks. In this review of the functional neuron classes in the Xenopus laevis tadpole spinal cord up to hatching we will consider progress and difficulties in using anatomy, transcription factor expression, physiology and activity to define spinal neuron types. Even here it is not straightforward and is rarely possible to bring all the different strands of evidence together. But, we think we have a rather complete picture of the hatchling tadpole spinal neurons types and can define clear roles for most of them in behaviour. Our present knowledge about the hatchling Xenopus spinal cord should set up many of the problems to be unravelled in the future by more developmentally oriented research.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)575-584
JournalDevelopmental Neurobiology
Volume72
Issue number4
Early online date11 Apr 2011
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'A functional scaffold of CNS neurons for the vertebrates: The developing Xenopus laevis spinal cord (review)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this