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Serum response factor regulates hippocampal lamination and dendrite development and is connected with reelin signaling.

ABSTRACT: During brain development, neurons and their nerve fibers are often segregated in specific layers. The hippocampus is a well-suited model system to study lamination in health and aberrant cell/fiber lamination associated with neurological disorders. SRF (serum response factor), a transcription factor, regulates synaptic-activity-induced immediate-early gene (IEG) induction and cytoskeleton-based neuronal motility. Using early postnatal conditional SRF ablation, we uncovered distorted hippocampal lamination, including malpositioning of granule cell neurons and disruption of layer-restricted termination of commissural-associational and mossy fiber axons. Besides axons, dendrite branching and spine morphogenesis in Srf mutants were impaired, offering a first morphological basis for SRF's reported role in learning and memory. Srf mutants resemble mice lacking components of the reelin signaling cascade, a fundamental signaling entity in brain lamination. Our data indicate that reelin signaling and SRF-mediated gene transcription might be connected: reelin induces IEG and cytoskeletal genes in an SRF-dependent manner. Further, reelin-induced neurite motility is blocked in Srf mutants and constitutively active SRF rescues impaired neurite extension in reeler mouse mutants in vitro. In sum, data provided in this report show that SRF contributes to hippocampal layer and nerve fiber organization and point at a link between Srf gene transcription and reelin signaling.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC2838085 | BioStudies | 2010-01-01T00:00:00Z

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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