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ERIC Number: EJ827037
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jan
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 102
ISSN: ISSN-0012-1649
Integrating Retinoic Acid Signaling with Brain Function
Luo, Tuanlian; Wagner, Elisabeth; Drager, Ursula C.
Developmental Psychology, v45 n1 p139-150 Jan 2009
The vitamin A derivative retinoic acid (RA) regulates the transcription of about a 6th of the human genome. Compelling evidence indicates a role of RA in cognitive activities, but its integration with the molecular mechanisms of higher brain functions is not known. Here we describe the properties of RA signaling in the mouse, which point to unknown means through which RA actions are modified and reinforced at selected brain sites. The locations of RA signaling for the developing dorsal forebrain undergo slow, gradual changes over the life cycle except for two brief periods of accelerated shifts, which coincide with periods of enhanced developmental vulnerability. In the functional cerebral cortex, RA signaling delineates regions with immature, plastic neuronal characteristics, within which the expression of hundreds of genes is differentially regulated. Many of these are involved in neuronal ligand-receptor interactions and signaling cascades for activity dependent gene expression. We propose that RA functions in the brain by contributing topographical information and life cycle changes to combinatorial transcriptional mechanisms and that in the postnatal cortex RA signaling designates domains of modifiable neuronal circuitry. (Contains 3 figures.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A