Int. J. Dev. Biol. 62: 195 - 205 (2018)
doi: 10.1387/ijdb.170298as
© UPV/EHU Press

Specification of sensory placode progenitors: signals and transcription factor networks

Andrea Streit*

Centre for Craniofacial & Regenerative Biology, Division of Craniofacial Development & Stem Cell Biology, Dental Institute, King’s College London, London UK

ABSTRACT Sensory placodes contribute to much of the sensory nervous system in the vertebrate head. They give rise to parts of the eye, ear and nose, as well as to the sensory ganglia that innervate the face, tongue, oesophagus and visceral tissues. Despite their diversity, during development placodes arise from a population of common progenitor cells, which are first specified at the border of the neural plate. The chick has been particularly instrumental in dissecting the timing of these events, and recent evidence has highlighted the close relationship of placode progenitors and precursors for neural crest cells and the central nervous system. This review focuses on the induction of placode progenitors by localised signalling events, and the transcriptional networks that lead to their specification.

Keywords:

chick, ear, eye, induction, olfactory epithelium, sensory ganglia, transcription factor

*Corresponding author e-mail: andrea.streit@kcl.ac.uk