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Neural stem cell study reveals mechanism that may play role in cancer
Date:9/5/2007

the radial fibers to the neocortex.

But the study revealed that newborn neurons and the newborn neural stem cell stick together for a significant period of time, up to many days, while the newborn neuron migrates to the cortex, and they are stuck together by the gap junctions. Its possible, says Kriegstein, that the adhesion function is allowing the gap junction to also support signaling through the gap junction channel between the neural stem cell and its daughter neuron.

The discovery of the gap junctions adhesion capacity also offers a window into its evolutionary history, says Kriegstein. The molecule may have been functioning for some time as an adhesion molecule, he says. It couldnt very well form a channel between two neighboring cells unless the two halves of the channel first stuck together.

The teams understanding of neuronal migration in the developing brain also appears likely to evolve. The discoveries theyve made in this study, like the processes of the migrating neuron, are moving them forward with new hypotheses to investigate.


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Contact: Jennifer OBrien
jobrien@pubaff.ucsf.edu
415-476-2557
University of California - San Francisco
Source:Eurekalert

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