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Perspectives on Intra- and Intercellular Trafficking of Hedgehog for Tissue Patterning

Centro de Biología Molecular “Severo Ochoa”, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, CSIC-UAM, Nicolás Cabrera 1, Cantoblanco, 28049 Madrid, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These two authors have equal contribution.
Academic Editors: Henk Roelink and Simon J. Conway
J. Dev. Biol. 2016, 4(4), 34;
Received: 21 September 2016 / Revised: 7 November 2016 / Accepted: 8 November 2016 / Published: 2 December 2016
(This article belongs to the Collection Hedgehog Signaling in Embryogenesis)
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Intercellular communication is a fundamental process for correct tissue development. The mechanism of this process involves, among other things, the production and secretion of signaling molecules by specialized cell types and the capability of these signals to reach the target cells in order to trigger specific responses. Hedgehog (Hh) is one of the best-studied signaling pathways because of its importance during morphogenesis in many organisms. The Hh protein acts as a morphogen, activating its targets at a distance in a concentration-dependent manner. Post-translational modifications of Hh lead to a molecule covalently bond to two lipid moieties. These lipid modifications confer Hh high affinity to lipidic membranes, and intense studies have been carried out to explain its release into the extracellular matrix. This work reviews Hh molecule maturation, the intracellular recycling needed for its secretion and the proposed carriers to explain Hh transportation to the receiving cells. Special focus is placed on the role of specialized filopodia, also named cytonemes, in morphogen transport and gradient formation. View Full-Text
Keywords: Hedgehog; cytonemes; gradient formation; pattern formation; modeling Hedgehog; cytonemes; gradient formation; pattern formation; modeling

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Simon, E.; Aguirre-Tamaral, A.; Aguilar, G.; Guerrero, I. Perspectives on Intra- and Intercellular Trafficking of Hedgehog for Tissue Patterning. J. Dev. Biol. 2016, 4, 34.

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