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Science 2015 Jun 19;3486241:1332-5. doi: 10.1126/science.aaa3655.
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NEURODEVELOPMENT. Shared regulatory programs suggest retention of blastula-stage potential in neural crest cells.

Buitrago-Delgado E , Nordin K , Rao A , Geary L , LaBonne C .

Neural crest cells, which are specific to vertebrates, arise in the ectoderm but can generate cell types that are typically categorized as mesodermal. This broad developmental potential persists past the time when most ectoderm-derived cells become lineage-restricted. The ability of neural crest to contribute mesodermal derivatives to the bauplan has raised questions about how this apparent gain in potential is achieved. Here, we describe shared molecular underpinnings of potency in neural crest and blastula cells. We show that in Xenopus, key neural crest regulatory factors are also expressed in blastula animal pole cells and promote pluripotency in both cell types. We suggest that neural crest cells may have evolved as a consequence of a subset of blastula cells retaining activity of the regulatory network underlying pluripotency.

PubMed ID: 25931449
PMC ID: PMC4652794
Article link: Science
Grant support: [+]

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: a2m ets1 foxd3 id3 myc myod1 pax3 pou5f3 pou5f3.2 pou5f3.3 snai1 snai2 sox17a sox2 sox3 sox5 tbxt tfap2a ventx2.2 wnt8a zic1
Morpholinos: sox5 MO2 sox5 MO3

References [+] :
Abitua, Identification of a rudimentary neural crest in a non-vertebrate chordate. 2012, Pubmed