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Dev Cell 2011 Jan 18;201:19-32. doi: 10.1016/j.devcel.2010.11.018.
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MicroRNA-9 reveals regional diversity of neural progenitors along the anterior-posterior axis.

Bonev B , Pisco A , Papalopulu N .

Neural progenitors self-renew and generate neurons throughout the central nervous system. Here, we uncover an unexpected regional specificity in the properties of neural progenitor cells, revealed by the function of a microRNA--miR-9. miR-9 is expressed in neural progenitors, and its knockdown results in an inhibition of neurogenesis along the anterior-posterior axis. However, the underlying mechanism differs--in the hindbrain, progenitors fail to exit the cell cycle, whereas in the forebrain they undergo apoptosis, counteracting the proliferative effect. Among several targets, we functionally identify hairy1 as a primary target of miR-9, regulated at the mRNA level. hairy1 mediates the effects of miR-9 on proliferation, through Fgf8 signaling in the forebrain and Wnt signaling in the hindbrain, but affects apoptosis only in the forebrain, via the p53 pathway. Our findings show a positional difference in the responsiveness of progenitors to miR-9 depletion, revealing an underlying divergence of their properties.

PubMed ID: 21238922
PMC ID: PMC3361082
Article link: Dev Cell
Grant support: [+]

Species referenced: Xenopus
Genes referenced: ccnd1 cdknx fgf8 hes1 mdm2 myt1 neurod1 rpl8 sox3 tp53 tubb2b wnt1 zic1
Morpholinos: hes1 MO1

Article Images: [+] show captions
References [+] :
Aruga, Zic1 promotes the expansion of dorsal neural progenitors in spinal cord by inhibiting neuronal differentiation. 2002, Pubmed