Rnd3 coordinates early steps of cortical neurogenesis through actin-dependent and -independent mechanisms

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The generation of neurons by neural stem cells is a highly choreographed process that requires extensive and dynamic remodelling of the cytoskeleton at each step of the process. The atypical RhoGTPase Rnd3 is expressed by progenitors in the embryonic brain but its role in early steps of neurogenesis has not been addressed. Here we show that silencing Rnd3 in the embryonic cerebral cortex interferes with the interkinetic nuclear migration of radial glial stem cells, disrupts their apical attachment and modifies the orientation of their cleavage plane. These defects are rescued by co-expression of a constitutively active form of cofilin, demonstrating that Rnd3-mediated disassembly of actin filaments coordinates the cellular behaviour of radial glial. Rnd3 also limits the divisions of basal progenitors via a distinct mechanism involving the suppression of cyclin D1 translation. Interestingly, although Rnd3 expression is controlled transcriptionally by Ascl1, this proneural factor is itself required in radial glial progenitors only for proper orientation of cell divisions.

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Volume 4
Pages 1635
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