Although cell migration is crucial for neural development, molecular mechanisms guiding neuronal migration have remained unclear. Hero we report that the secreted protein Slit repels neuronal precursors migrating from the anterior subventricular zone in the telencephalon to the olfactory bulb. Our results provide a direct demonstration of a molecular cue whose concentration gradient guides the direction of migrating neurons. They also support a common guidance mechanism for axon projection and neuronal migration and suggest that Slit may provide a molecular tool with potential therapeutic applications in controlling and directing cell migration.
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