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The reelin pathway modulates the structure and function of retinal synaptic circuitry.

The formation of synaptic connections requires the coordination of specific guidance molecules and spontaneous neuronal activity. The visual system has provided a useful model for understanding the role of these cues in shaping the precise connections from the neural retina to the brain. Here, we demonstrate that two essential genes in the Reelin signaling pathway function during the patterning of synaptic connectivity in the retina. Physiological studies of mice deficient in either reelin or disabled-1 reveal an attenuation of rod-driven retinal responses. This defect is associated with a decrease in rod bipolar cell density and an abnormal distribution of processes in the inner plexiform layer. These results imply that, in addition to its essential role during neuronal migration, the Reelin pathway contributes to the formation of neuronal circuits in the central nervous system.

Pubmed ID: 11580894


  • Rice DS
  • Nusinowitz S
  • Azimi AM
  • Martínez A
  • Soriano E
  • Curran T



Publication Data

September 27, 2001

Associated Grants

  • Agency: NEI NIH HHS, Id: F32 EY06972
  • Agency: NCI NIH HHS, Id: P30 CA21765
  • Agency: NINDS NIH HHS, Id: R01 NS36558

Mesh Terms

  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Age Factors
  • Animals
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules, Neuronal
  • Cell Count
  • Cell Movement
  • Electroretinography
  • Extracellular Matrix Proteins
  • Eye Proteins
  • Interneurons
  • LDL-Receptor Related Proteins
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C3H
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Neurologic Mutants
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Receptors, LDL
  • Receptors, Lipoprotein
  • Retina
  • Retinal Rod Photoreceptor Cells
  • Serine Endopeptidases
  • Synapses
  • Visual Pathways