Neuronal Roadmap

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Science  05 Oct 2007:
Vol. 318, Issue 5847, pp. 13g
DOI: 10.1126/science.318.5847.13g

As the neural system develops, a distinctive network of interneuron connections is created. Colón-Ramos et al. (p. 103) now find that, in the nematode worm Caenorhabditis elegans, the supporting glial cells provide the requisite road map for making these connections. Particular glial cells express netrin, a signaling molecule, which tells the postsynaptic neuron where to find its connection and tells the presynaptic neuron where to build the substructures required for the connection. Localization of the netrin expression in the glial cells serves to focus the neuronal synapse-building capacity in the right spot.

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