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Open AccessArticle

Integrins Have Cell-Type-Specific Roles in the Development of Motor Neuron Connectivity

1
Department of Neurobiology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, MA 01605, USA
2
Department of Biological and Physical Sciences, Assumption College, Worcester, MA 01609, USA
3
Department of Biological Sciences, University of Quebec Montreal, Montreal, QC H2L 2C4, Canada
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
J. Dev. Biol. 2019, 7(3), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/jdb7030017
Received: 17 July 2019 / Revised: 11 August 2019 / Accepted: 22 August 2019 / Published: 27 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Caenorhabditis elegans - A Developmental Genetic Model System)
Formation of the nervous system requires a complex series of events including proper extension and guidance of neuronal axons and dendrites. Here we investigate the requirement for integrins, a class of transmembrane cell adhesion receptors, in regulating these processes across classes of C. elegans motor neurons. We show α integrin/ina-1 is expressed by both GABAergic and cholinergic motor neurons. Despite this, our analysis of hypomorphic ina-1(gm144) mutants indicates preferential involvement of α integrin/ina-1 in GABAergic commissural development, without obvious involvement in cholinergic commissural development. The defects in GABAergic commissures of ina-1(gm144) mutants included both premature termination and guidance errors and were reversed by expression of wild type ina-1 under control of the native ina-1 promoter. Our results also show that α integrin/ina-1 is important for proper outgrowth and guidance of commissures from both embryonic and post-embryonic born GABAergic motor neurons, indicating an ongoing requirement for integrin through two phases of GABAergic neuron development. Our findings provide insights into neuron-specific roles for integrin that would not be predicted based solely upon expression analysis. View Full-Text
Keywords: axon guidance; axon outgrowth; commissure; integrin; C. elegans; GABAergic motor neuron; ina-1 axon guidance; axon outgrowth; commissure; integrin; C. elegans; GABAergic motor neuron; ina-1
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Oliver, D.; Norman, E.; Bates, H.; Avard, R.; Rettler, M.; Bénard, C.Y.; Francis, M.M.; Lemons, M.L. Integrins Have Cell-Type-Specific Roles in the Development of Motor Neuron Connectivity. J. Dev. Biol. 2019, 7, 17.

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