Bidirectional ephrin/Eph signaling in synaptic functions

Department of Molecular and Cell Biology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-3200, USA.
Brain Research (Impact Factor: 2.83). 01/2008; 1184:72-80. DOI: 10.1016/j.brainres.2006.11.033
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Eph receptors, the largest family of receptor tyrosine kinases, and their membrane bound ligands, the ephrins, are involved in multiple developmental and adult processes within and outside of the nervous system. Bi-directional signaling from both the receptor and the ligand is initiated by ephrin-Eph binding upon cell-cell contact, and involves interactions with distinct subsets of downstream signaling molecules related to specific functions. In the CNS, Ephs and ephrins act as attractive/repulsive, migratory and cell adhesive cues during development and participate in synaptic functions in adult animals. In this review, we will focus on recent findings highlighting the functions of ephrin/Eph signaling in dendritic spine morphogenesis, synapse formation and synaptic plasticity.

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