Local gene regulation in radial glia: Lessons from across the nervous system.
Radial glial cells (RGCs) are progenitors of the cerebral cortex which produce both neurons and glia during development. Given their central role in development, RGC dysfunction can result in diverse neurodevelopmental disorders. RGCs have an elongated bipolar morphology that spans the entire radial width of the cortex and ends in basal endfeet connected to the pia. The basal process and endfeet are important for proper guidance of migrating neurons and are implicated in signaling. However, endfeet must function at a great distance from the cell body. This spatial separation suggests a role for local gene regulation in endfeet. Endfeet contain a local transcriptome enriched for cytoskeletal and signaling factors. These localized mRNAs are actively transported from the cell body and can be locally translated in endfeet. Yet, studies of local gene regulation in RGC endfeet are still in their infancy. Here, we draw comparisons of RGCs with foundational work in anatomically and phylogenetically related cell types, neurons and astrocytes. Our review highlights a striking overlap in the types of RNAs localized, as well as principles of local translation between these three cell types. Thus, studies in neurons, astrocytes and RGCs can mutually inform an understanding of RNA localization across the nervous system.
Volume / Issue
Start / End Page
Pubmed Central ID
Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)