Nat Rev Neurosci 2019 Apr 18. Epub 2019 Apr 18.
Sorbonne Université, INSERM, CNRS, Institut de la Vision, Paris, France.
The spinal cord receives, relays and processes sensory information from the periphery and integrates this information with descending inputs from supraspinal centres to elicit precise and appropriate behavioural responses and orchestrate body movements. Understanding how the spinal cord circuits that achieve this integration are wired during development is the focus of much research interest. Several families of proteins have well-established roles in guiding developing spinal cord axons, and recent findings have identified new axon guidance molecules. Nevertheless, an integrated view of spinal cord network development is lacking, and many current models have neglected the cellular and functional diversity of spinal cord circuits. Recent advances challenge the existing spinal cord axon guidance dogmas and have provided a more complex, but more faithful, picture of the ontogenesis of vertebrate spinal cord circuits.