Chordate roots of the vertebrate nervous system: expanding the molecular toolkit

Citation:
Holland, LZ.  2009.  Chordate roots of the vertebrate nervous system: expanding the molecular toolkit. Nature Reviews Neuroscience. 10:736-746.

Date Published:

Oct

Keywords:

beard sensory, ciona-intestinalis, cranial placodes, developmental, early xenopus development, expression, networks, neural crest evolution, neurogenic placodes, neurons, nonneural ectoderm, regulatory, transposable elements

Abstract:

The vertebrate brain is highly complex with millions to billions of neurons. During development, the neural plate border region gives rise to the neural crest, cranial placodes and, in anamniotes, to Rohon-Beard sensory neurons, whereas the boundary region of the midbrain and hindbrain develops organizer properties. Comparisons of developmental gene expression and neuroanatomy between vertebrates and the basal chordate amphioxus, which has only thousands of neurons and lacks a neural crest, most placodes and a midbrain-hindbrain organizer, indicate that these vertebrate features were built on a foundation already present in the ancestral chordate. Recent advances in genomics have provided insights into the elaboration of the molecular toolkit at the invertebrate-vertebrate transition that may have facilitated the evolution of these vertebrate characteristics.

Notes:

n/a

Website

DOI:

10.1038/nrn2703