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Fate determination of retinal neurons: Lineage relationships and the inhibitory master switch Ptf1a

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During neurogenesis of the central nervous system (CNS), a multitude of different neuronal types form from undifferentiated progenitor cells. We study the mechanisms of cell fate determination of visual neurons in the zebrafish retina, an accessible and highly organised part of the CNS .

The different retinal neuron types are born at different developmental times from multipotent progenitors. In the current model of neurogenesis, progenitor cells undergo temporal changes in competence states (driven by changes in the complement of genes expressed at any given time) that bias differentiating neurons towards particular fates.

Here, I will introduce some of key genes that drive fate determination and how the lineage of cells expressing these different genes relate to each other. My current work focuses on the role of the pancreas transcription factor 1a (Ptf1a), which has been implicated in determination of inhibitory cell fates throughout different CNS regions including the retina.

This talk is part of the Craik Club series.

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