Switching modes in corticogenesis: Mechanisms of neuronal subtype transitions and integration in the cerebral cortex

Carina Hanashima, Kenichi Toma

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

19 Citations (Scopus)


Information processing in the cerebral cortex requires the activation of diverse neurons across layers and columns, which are established through the coordinated production of distinct neuronal subtypes and their placement along the three-dimensional axis. Over recent years, our knowledge of the regulatory mechanisms of the specification and integration of neuronal subtypes in the cerebral cortex has progressed rapidly. In this review, we address how the unique cytoarchitecture of the neocortex is established from a limited number of progenitors featuring neuronal identity transitions during development. We further illuminate the molecular mechanisms of the subtype-specific integration of these neurons into the cerebral cortex along the radial and tangential axis, and we discuss these key features to exemplify how neocortical circuit formation accomplishes economical connectivity while maintaining plasticity and evolvability to adapt to environmental changes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number274
JournalFrontiers in Neuroscience
Issue numberJUL
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes



  • Cajal-Retzius cells
  • Cell fate specification
  • Glutamatergic neuron
  • Layer
  • Migration
  • Mouse models
  • Neocortex
  • Network
  • Subplate cells
  • Transcription factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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