ZFIN ID: ZDB-PUB-190910-2
Migratory Neural Crest Cells Phagocytose Dead Cells in the Developing Nervous System
Zhu, Y., Crowley, S.C., Latimer, A.J., Lewis, G.M., Nash, R., Kucenas, S.
Date: 2019
Source: Cell   179(1): 74-89.e10 (Journal)
Registered Authors: Kucenas, Sarah, Latimer, Andrew, Nash, Rebecca, Zhu, Yunlu
Keywords: interleukin-1β, macrophages, neural crest cells, neural development, neurogenesis, phagocytosis, zebrafish
Microarrays: GEO:GSE135237
MeSH Terms:
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Apoptosis/physiology
  • Cell Differentiation/physiology
  • Cell Movement/physiology*
  • Interleukin-1beta/metabolism
  • Neural Crest/physiology*
  • Neurogenesis/physiology*
  • Peripheral Nervous System/growth & development*
  • Phagocytes/physiology
  • Phagocytosis/physiology*
  • Phagosomes/physiology
  • Spinal Cord/growth & development*
  • Zebrafish/embryology
PubMed: 31495570 Full text @ Cell
During neural tube closure and spinal cord development, many cells die in both the central and peripheral nervous systems (CNS and PNS, respectively). However, myeloid-derived professional phagocytes have not yet colonized the trunk region during early neurogenesis. How apoptotic cells are removed from this region during these stages remains largely unknown. Using live imaging in zebrafish, we demonstrate that neural crest cells (NCCs) respond rapidly to dying cells and phagocytose cellular debris around the neural tube. Additionally, NCCs have the ability to enter the CNS through motor exit point transition zones and clear debris in the spinal cord. Surprisingly, NCCs phagocytosis mechanistically resembles macrophage phagocytosis and their recruitment toward cellular debris is mediated by interleukin-1β. Taken together, our results reveal a role for NCCs in phagocytosis of debris in the developing nervous system before the presence of professional phagocytes.