The neural crest is a unique embryonic structure composed of a migratory population of multipotent cells. It is induced at the border of neural and epidermal tissues and contributes to a numerous cell types in the developing vertebrate embryo. The induction of neural crest has been proposed to be a multi-step process, involving an intermediate level of signaling by bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) and additional signals from adjacent tissues. Although these signals have not been identified with certainty, evidence from work in Xenopus and mouse, and more recently in chick and zebrafish, supports a role for the Wnt signaling pathway in the early steps of neural crest development.
ASJC Scopus subject areas