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Signaling filopodia in avian embryogenesis: formation and function

Institute of Anatomy II, University of Cologne, Joseph-Stelzmann-Str. 9, 50937 Cologne, Germany

Topical Section: Cells Signalling and Signal Transduction

In vertebrates and invertebrates specialized cellular protrusions, called signaling filopodia or cytonemes, play an important role in cell-cell communication by carrying receptors and ligands to distant cells to activate various signaling pathways. In the chicken embryo, signaling filopodia were described in limb bud mesenchyme and in somite epithelia. The formation of signaling filopodia depends on the activity of Rho GTPases and reorganization of the cytoskeleton. Here, we give a short overview on the present knowledge on avian signaling filopodia and discuss the molecular basis of cytoskeletal rearrangements leading to filopodia formation.
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