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Development of the chick wing and leg neuromuscular systems and their plasticity in response to changes in digit numbers

Luxey, Maëva and Berki, Bianka and Heusermann, Wolf and Fischer, Sabrina and Tschopp, Patrick. (2020) Development of the chick wing and leg neuromuscular systems and their plasticity in response to changes in digit numbers. Developmental Biology, 458 (2). pp. 133-140.

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Abstract

The tetrapod limb has long served as a paradigm to study vertebrate pattern formation. During limb morphogenesis, a number of distinct tissue types are patterned and subsequently must be integrated to form coherent functional units. For example, the musculoskeletal apparatus of the limb requires the coordinated development of the skeletal elements, connective tissues, muscles and nerves. Here, using light-sheet microscopy and 3D-reconstructions, we concomitantly follow the developmental emergence of nerve and muscle patterns in chicken wings and legs, two appendages with highly specialized locomotor outputs. Despite a comparable flexor/extensor-arrangement of their embryonic muscles, wings and legs show a rotated innervation pattern for their three main motor nerve branches. To test the functional implications of these distinct neuromuscular topologies, we challenge their ability to adapt and connect to an experimentally altered skeletal pattern in the distal limb, the autopod. Our results show that, unlike autopod muscle groups, motor nerves are unable to fully adjust to a changed peripheral organisation, potentially constrained by their original projection routes. As the autopod has undergone substantial morphological diversifications over the course of tetrapod evolution, our results have implications for the coordinated modification of the distal limb musculoskeletal apparatus, as well as for our understanding of the varying degrees of motor functionality associated with human hand and foot malformations.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Integrative Biologie > Regulatory Evolution (Tschopp)
UniBasel Contributors:Tschopp, Patrick
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0012-1606
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
Language:English
Identification Number:
Last Modified:23 Jun 2020 07:31
Deposited On:22 Jun 2020 07:01

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