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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Localizing synaptic mRNAs at the neuromuscular junction: it takes more than transcription.

The neuromuscular junction has been used for several decades as an excellent model system to examine the cellular and molecular events involved in the formation and maintenance of a differentiated chemical synapse. In this context, several laboratories have focused their efforts over the last 15 years on the important contribution of transcriptional mechanisms to the regulation of the development and plasticity of the postsynaptic apparatus in muscle fibers. Converging lines of evidence now indicate that post-transcriptional events, operating at the level of mRNA stability and targeting, are likely to also play key roles at the neuromuscular junction. Here, we present the recent findings highlighting the role of these additional molecular events and extend our review to include data showing that post-transcriptional events are also important in the control of the expression of genes encoding synaptic proteins in muscle cells placed under different conditions. Finally, we discuss the possibility that mis-regulation of post-transcriptional events can occur in certain neuromuscular diseases and cause abnormalities of the neuromuscular junction.[1]


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