Commissural axon pathfinding on the contralateral side of the floor plate: a role for B-class ephrins in specifying the dorsoventral position of longitudinally projecting commissural axons

Ralph Imondi, Zaven Kaprielian
2001 Development  
In both invertebrate and lower vertebrate species, decussated commissural axons travel away from the midline and assume positions within distinct longitudinal tracts. We demonstrate that in the developing chick and mouse spinal cord, most dorsally situated commissural neuron populations extend axons across the ventral midline and through the ventral white matter along an arcuate trajectory on the contralateral side of the floor plate. Within the dorsal (chick) and intermediate (mouse) marginal
more » ... one, commissural axons turn at a conserved boundary of transmembrane ephrin expression, adjacent to which they form a discrete ascending fiber tract. In vitro perturbation of endogenous EphB-ephrinB interactions results in the failure of commissural axons to turn at the appropriate dorsoventral position on the contralateral side of the spinal cord; consequently, axons inappropriately invade more dorsal regions of B-class ephrin expression in the dorsal spinal cord. Taken together, these observations suggest that B-class ephrins act locally during a late phase of commissural axon pathfinding to specify the dorsoventral position at which decussated commissural axons turn into the longitudinal axis.
doi:10.1242/dev.128.23.4859 fatcat:lozptav3k5b3tn25tcvrktfymu