Int. J. Dev. Biol. In Press
doi: 10.1387/ijdb.210185md
© UPV/EHU Press

The development of MGE-derived cortical interneurons: An Lhx6 tale

Ourania Christodoulou1,3, Ioannis Maragkos2,3, Vassiliki Antonakou2,3 and Myrto Denaxa*,3

1University of Crete, Department of Biology, Heraklion Crete, 2National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Department of Biology, Athens and 3Biomedical Sciences Research Center “Alexander Fleming”, Vari, Greece

ABSTRACT The cerebral cortex contains two main neuronal cell populations, the excitatory pyramidal neurons and the inhibitory interneurons, which constitute 20-30% of all cortical neurons. Cortical interneurons are characterized by a remarkable morphological, molecular and functional diversity. A swathe of research activity in the last 20 years aimed to determine how cortical interneurons acquire their mature cellular and functional features, identified a number of transcription factors that function at different stages of interneuron development. Here, we review all current knowledge concerning the multiple functions of the “master regulator” LIMHomeodomain transcription factor Lhx6; a gene expressed in the medial ganglionic eminence of the basal telencephalon that controls the development of somatostatin and parvalbumin expressing interneurons.

Keywords:

Lhx6, medial ganglionic eminence, cortical interneurons, parvalbumin, somatostatin, brain development

*Corresponding author e-mail: denaxa@fleming.gr