Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Molecular Insight Into Vertebrate Brain Development

Date:
November 27, 2008
Source:
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Summary:
Scientists reveal a role for the Hippo signaling pathway in the regulation of vertebrate neural development, identifying new factors and potential therapeutic targets that may be involved in congenital brain size disorders and neurological tumor formation.

Dr. Fred H. Gage (The Salk Institute for Biological Studies) and colleagues reveal a role for the Hippo signaling pathway in the regulation of vertebrate neural development, identifying new factors – and potential therapeutic targets – that may be involved in congenital brain size disorders and neurological tumor formation.

Establishing the basic embryonic brain requires the formation of a hollow neural tube, which serves as the rudimentary central nervous system, as well as the controlled proliferation and differentiation of neural progenitor cells into various specialized cell types.

The Hippo pathway is an ancient conserved signaling cascade that is known to regulate organ size in the fly and mouse. Previous research has demonstrated that Hippo signaling serves as a brake on cell growth and proliferation by preventing another protein, YAP, from entering the nucleus and activating pro-growth genes.

Drs. Xinwei Cao, Samuel Pfaff and Fred Gage now report* that Hippo signaling is a critical master regulator of bran size in vertebrates that functions by restricting instructing the survival, proliferation and differentiation of neural precursor cells. In addition, the researchers identified the TEA domain (TEAD) transcription factor protein as the long-sought-after cognate DNA-binding partner of YAP in the nucleus.

Using genetic manipulation of chick embryos, the scientists demonstrated the consequences of altered Hippo signaling on vertebrate neural tube development. Increased YAP/TEAD activity induced neural progenitor cell overproliferation and the formation of an expanded neural progenitor cell population. Decreased YAP/TEAD activity led to increased cell death, while repression of YAP/TEAD target genes induced premature neuronal differentiation.

Owing to the evolutionary conservation of the Hippo signaling pathway, Dr. Gage states that "understanding the HIPPO path may bring insights to human brain malformations. There are a number of brain size defects for which we are considering a follow up, including microcephaly and Autism, where the overall brain size is affected but structures retain the proportionality. The function of the HIPPO pathway also has implications for brain size evolution, which is of great interested to us."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Xinwei Cao, Samuel L. Pfaff, Fred H. Gage. YAP regulates neural progenitor cell number via the TEA domain transcription factor. Genes and Development, Online Nov 17; in print Dec 1, 2008 DOI: 10.1101/gad.1726608

Cite This Page:

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. "New Molecular Insight Into Vertebrate Brain Development." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081117153203.htm>.
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. (2008, November 27). New Molecular Insight Into Vertebrate Brain Development. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081117153203.htm
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. "New Molecular Insight Into Vertebrate Brain Development." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081117153203.htm (accessed August 22, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, August 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Lost Brain Cells To Blame For Sleep Problems Among Seniors

Newsy (Aug. 21, 2014) According to a new study, elderly people might have trouble sleeping because of the loss of a certain group of neurons in the brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Do More Wedding Guests Make A Happier Marriage?

Newsy (Aug. 20, 2014) A new study found couples who had at least 150 guests at their weddings were more likely to report being happy in their marriages. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape

AP (Aug. 20, 2014) Nine years after Hurricane Katrina, charter schools are the new reality of public education in New Orleans. The state of Louisiana took over most of the city's public schools after the killer storm in 2005. (Aug. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins