Growth Cone Travel in Space and Time: The Cellular Ensemble of Cytoskeleton, Adhesion, and Membrane

Eric A. Vitriol, James Q. Zheng

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

148 Scopus citations

Abstract

Growth cones, found at the tip of axonal projections, are the sensory and motile organelles of developing neurons that enable axon pathfinding and target recognition for precise wiring of the neural circuitry. To date, many families of conserved guidance molecules and their corresponding receptors have been identified that work in space and time to ensure billions of axons to reach their targets. Research in the past two decades has also gained significant insight into the ways in which growth cones translate extracellular signals into directional migration. This review aims to examine new progress toward understanding the cellular mechanisms underlying directional motility of the growth cone and to discuss questions that remain to be addressed. Specifically, we will focus on the cellular ensemble of cytoskeleton, adhesion, and membrane and examine how the intricate interplay between these processes orchestrates the directed movement of growth cones. Growth cones are the sensory and motile organelles of developing neurons that enable axon pathfinding. In this review, Vitriol and Zheng examine emerging cellular mechanisms underlying directional motility of the growth cone, focusing on the cellular ensemble of cytoskeleton, adhesion, and membrane.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1068-1081
Number of pages14
JournalNeuron
Volume73
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 22 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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