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Embryonic Origins of Auditory Brain-Stem Nuclei in the Chick Hindbrain

Cramer, Karina S. and Fraser, Scott E. and Rubel, Edwin W. (2000) Embryonic Origins of Auditory Brain-Stem Nuclei in the Chick Hindbrain. Developmental Biology, 224 (2). pp. 138-151. ISSN 0012-1606. doi:10.1006/dbio.2000.9779.

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The auditory nuclei of the chick brain stem have distinct morphologies and highly specific synaptic connectivity. Nucleus magnocellularis (NM) and nucleus angularis receive tonotopically ordered cochlear input. NM in turn projects tonotopically to nucleus laminaris (NL), maintaining binaural specificity with projections to either dorsal or ventral NL dendrites. NM and NL arise from a common anlage, which differentiates as the cells migrate and acquire their mature morphologies. NM and NL cells are closely associated during embryogenesis and synapse formation. However, the morphologies of the nuclei and of the cells within the nuclei differ greatly between NM and NL. While later maturation of these nuclei has been described in considerable detail, relatively little is known about the early embryonic events that lead to the formation of these nuclei. We examined the embryonic origins of cells in brain-stem auditory nuclei with particular emphasis on NM and NL. Lipophilic dyes were injected into small regions of the embryonic hindbrain prior to the birth and migration of cells that contribute to these nuclei. We found that NM arises from rhombomeres r5, r6, and r7, and NL arises mostly from r5 with a few cells arising from r6. NM and NL thus have partially overlapping rhombomeres of origin. However, we found that the precursors for NM and NL are found in distinct regions within rhombomere 5, with NM precursors in medial regions and NL precursors in lateral regions. Our results do not support a lineage relationship between NM and NL cells and they suggest that NM and NL are specified prior to migration of precursors to the auditory anlage.

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Fraser, Scott E.0000-0002-5377-0223
Additional Information:© 2000 Academic Press. Received for publication January 3, 2000. Revised May 11, 2000. Accepted May 11, 2000. Preliminary studies while E.WR. was on sabbatical at Caltech were supported in part by a Wiersma Fellowship. We are grateful to Drs. M. Bronner-Fraser, P. Kulesa, and M. Konishi for valuable suggestions during this study. We are also grateful to G. MacDonald for technical assistance and to D. Molea, Dr. L. Westrum, and Dr. O. Bermingham-McDonogh for helpful suggestions with this study. In addition, we thank Drs. S. Cochran and L. Cunningham for helpful comments on the manuscript. This research was supported by NIH 00395.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Wiersma FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:hindbrain; auditory brain stem; nucleus laminaris; nucleus magnocellularis; fate map
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20160114-082655623
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Official Citation:Karina S. Cramer, Scott E. Fraser, Edwin W Rubel, Embryonic Origins of Auditory Brain-Stem Nuclei in the Chick Hindbrain, Developmental Biology, Volume 224, Issue 2, 15 August 2000, Pages 138-151, ISSN 0012-1606, (
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:63675
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:14 Jan 2016 19:35
Last Modified:10 Nov 2021 23:19

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