Cyclin-Dependent Kinase 5/p35 Contributes Synergistically with Reelin/Dab1 to the Positioning of Facial Branchiomotor and Inferior Olive Neurons in the Developing Mouse Hindbrain

Toshio Ohshima, Masaharu Ogawa, Kyoko Takeuchi, Satoru Takahashi, Ashok B. Kulkarni, Katsuhiko Mikoshiba

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Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5)/p35 is a serine/threonine kinase, and its activity is detected primarily in postmitotic neurons. Mice lacking Cdk5/p35 display migration defects of the cortical neurons in the cerebrum and cerebellum. In this study, we demonstrate that although most brainstem nuclei are found in their proper positions, the motor nucleus of the facial nerve is ectopically located and neurons of the inferior olive fail to position correctly, resulting in the lack of their characteristic structures in the hindbrain of Cdk5-/- mice. Despite the defective migration of these neurons, axonal exits of the facial nerve from brainstem and projections of the inferior cerebellar axons appear unchanged in Cdk5-/- mice. Defective neuronal migration in Cdk5-/- hindbrain was rescued by the neuron-specific expression of Cdk5 transgene. Because developmental defects of these structures have been reported in reeler and Dab1 mutant mice, we analyzed the double-null mutants of p35 and Dab1 and found more extensive ectopia of VII motor nuclei in these mice. These results indicate that Cdk5/p35 and Reelin signaling regulates the selective mode of neuronal migration in the developing mouse hindbrain.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4036-4044
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Neuroscience
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2002 May 15
Externally publishedYes



  • Cdk5
  • Disabled-1
  • Facial branchiomotor neuron
  • Inferior olive
  • p35
  • Reelin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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