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Dendrites$
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Greg Stuart, Nelson Spruston, and Michael Häusser

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198745273

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198745273.001.0001

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Molecular determinants of dendrite and spine development

Molecular determinants of dendrite and spine development

Chapter:
(p.95) Chapter 4 Molecular determinants of dendrite and spine development
Source:
Dendrites
Author(s):

Franck Polleux

Anirvan Ghosh

Wesley B. Grueber

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198745273.003.0004

Information processing in neurons is critically dependent on dendritic morphology. The overall extent and orientation of dendrites determines the kinds of input a neuron receives. Fine dendritic appendages called spines act as subcellular compartments devoted to processing synaptic information, and the dendritic branching pattern determines the efficacy with which synaptic information is transmitted to the soma. The development of the dendritic tree is influenced by a number of factors. Studies in Drosophila have identified key components of the genetic program that regulates dendritic morphogenesis. Parallel studies in vertebrates have revealed that extracellular signals and neuronal activity exert a major influence on the growth and branching of dendrites and the formation of dendritic spines. The identification of genes that mediate theses processes provides important insights into the molecular mechanisms of dendritic morphogenesis.

Keywords:   dendrite, development, dendritic morphogenesis, spines, neuronal activity, genetic program, dendritic morphology

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