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

Pdm and Castor specify late-born motor neuron identity in the NB7-1 lineage.

Embryonic development requires generating cell types at the right place (spatial patterning) and the right time (temporal patterning). Drosophila neuroblasts undergo stem cell-like divisions to generate an ordered sequence of neuronal progeny, making them an attractive system to study temporal patterning. Embryonic neuroblasts sequentially express Hunchback, Krüppel, Pdm1/Pdm2 (Pdm), and Castor (Cas) transcription factors. Hunchback and Krüppel specify early-born temporal identity, but the role of Pdm and Cas in specifying temporal identity has never been addressed. Here we show that Pdm and Cas regulate late-born motor neuron identity within the NB7-1 lineage: Pdm specifies fourth-born U4 motor neuron identity, while Pdm/Cas together specify fifth-born U5 motor neuron identity. We conclude that Pdm and Cas specify late-born neuronal identity; that Pdm and Cas act combinatorially to specify a temporal identity distinct from either protein alone, and that Cas repression of pdm expression regulates the generation of neuronal diversity.[1]


  1. Pdm and Castor specify late-born motor neuron identity in the NB7-1 lineage. Grosskortenhaus, R., Robinson, K.J., Doe, C.Q. Genes Dev. (2006) [Pubmed]
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