Histone deacetylase activity has an essential role in establishing and maintaining the vertebrate neural crest

Anjali Rao, Carole LaBonne

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations

Abstract

The neural crest, a progenitor population that drove vertebrate evolution, retains the broad developmental potential of the blastula cells it is derived from, even as neighboring cells undergo lineage restriction. The mechanisms that enable these cells to preserve their developmental potential remain poorly understood. Here, we explore the role of histone deacetylase (HDAC) activity in this process in Xenopus. We show that HDAC activity is essential for the formation of neural crest, as well as for proper patterning of the early ectoderm. The requirement for HDAC activity initiates in naïve blastula cells; HDAC inhibition causes loss of pluripotency gene expression and blocks the ability of blastula stem cells to contribute to lineages of the three embryonic germ layers. We find that pluripotent naïve blastula cells and neural crest cells are both characterized by low levels of histone acetylation, and show that increasing HDAC1 levels enhance the ability of blastula cells to be reprogrammed to a neural crest state. Together, these findings elucidate a previously uncharacterized role for HDAC activity in establishing the neural crest stem cell state.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberdev163386
JournalDevelopment (Cambridge)
Volume145
Issue number15
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2018

Keywords

  • HDAC
  • Histone acetylation
  • Neural crest
  • Pluripotency
  • Stem cell
  • Xenopus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Developmental Biology

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