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Development of the vertebrate visual system - the role of Slit and Robo and signalling from the lens

Thompson, H; (2007) Development of the vertebrate visual system - the role of Slit and Robo and signalling from the lens. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Previous studies have shown that Slit and Robo proteins are key regulators of axon guidance at the developing optic chiasm. In addition to their expression around the chiasm slitl and slit2 mRNAs are also expressed in the retina and along the border of the optic tract. Robo2 mRNA expression has also been shown in the RGC layer in the retina suggesting these proteins may mediate RGC axon pathfinding in these regions. To investigate this I used immunohistochemistry and Dil-labelling during various stages in embryonic development to observe the RGC axons through the optic pathway. Using this approach, I found that Slit 1-2 and Robo2 are needed to direct correct pathfinding of RGC axons through the optic tract. In their absence, RGC axons project ectopically into the telencephalon and epithalamus and cross the dorsal midline. In the retina, I found roles for Slitl-2 and Robo2 in restricting RGC axons to the OFL and in directing the initial projection of axons away from the peripheral retina These defects were region specific, occurring in different halves of the retina I further examined the role of the lens, as a source of Slit2, in inhibiting RGC axon growth into the peripheral retina To study signalling from the lens further, I switched to chick as a model system which would enable in ovo manipulations and observations. This led to a study trying to elucidate signals from the lens that could influence coordinated growth of the retina and eye. In the absence of the lens, growth of the eye is dramatically reduced and the retina appears extensivefolded. I have examined the expression of a range of molecules in the lens and looked further at the role of FGFs in regulating the coordinated growth of the eye and retina.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Development of the vertebrate visual system - the role of Slit and Robo and signalling from the lens
Identifier: PQ ETD:593510
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Thesis digitised by ProQuest. Third party copyright material has been removed from the ethesis. Images identifying individuals have been redacted or partially redacted to protect their identity.
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1446179
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