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Development 2010 Sep 01;13717:2927-37. doi: 10.1242/dev.041079.
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Serotonin 2B receptor signaling is required for craniofacial morphogenesis and jaw joint formation in Xenopus.

Reisoli E , De Lucchini S , Nardi I , Ori M .

Serotonin (5-HT) is a neuromodulator that plays many different roles in adult and embryonic life. Among the 5-HT receptors, 5-HT2B is one of the key mediators of 5-HT functions during development. We used Xenopus laevis as a model system to further investigate the role of 5-HT2B in embryogenesis, focusing on craniofacial development. By means of gene gain- and loss-of-function approaches and tissue transplantation assays, we demonstrated that 5-HT2B modulates, in a cell-autonomous manner, postmigratory skeletogenic cranial neural crest cell (NCC) behavior without altering early steps of cranial NCC development and migration. 5-HT2B overexpression induced the formation of an ectopic visceral skeletal element and altered the dorsoventral patterning of the branchial arches. Loss-of-function experiments revealed that 5-HT2B signaling is necessary for jaw joint formation and for shaping the mandibular arch skeletal elements. In particular, 5-HT2B signaling is required to define and sustain the Xbap expression necessary for jaw joint formation. To shed light on the molecular identity of the transduction pathway acting downstream of 5-HT2B, we analyzed the function of phospholipase C beta 3 (PLC) in Xenopus development and showed that PLC is the effector of 5-HT2B during craniofacial development. Our results unveiled an unsuspected role of 5-HT2B in craniofacial development and contribute to our understanding of the interactive network of patterning signals that is involved in the development and evolution of the vertebrate mandibular arch.

PubMed ID: 20667918
Article link: Development

Species referenced: Xenopus laevis
Genes referenced: dlx2 efnb2 gal.2 hand2 hoxa2 htr2b nkx3-1 nkx3-2 pcgf2 plcb3 slc12a3 snai2 sox9 tbx2 znf469
Antibodies: Somite Ab3
Morpholinos: htr2b MO1 htr2b MO2 plcb3 MO1

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