Phosphatidylinositol transfer protein/planar cell polarity axis regulates neocortical morphogenesis by supporting interkinetic nuclear migration. Academic Article uri icon


  • The neocortex expands explosively during embryonic development. The earliest populations of neural stem cells (NSCs) form a thin pseudostratified epithelium whose contour determines that of the adult neocortex. Neocortical complexity is accompanied by disproportional expansion of the NSC layer in its tangential dimension to increase tissue surface area. How such disproportional expansion is controlled remains unknown. We demonstrate that a phosphatidylinositol transfer protein (PITP)/non-canonical Wnt planar cell polarity (ncPCP) signaling axis promotes tangential expansion of developing neocortex. PITP signaling supports trafficking of specific ncPCP receptors from the NSC Golgi system to potentiate actomyosin activity important for cell-cycle-dependent interkinetic nuclear migration (IKNM). In turn, IKNM promotes lateral dispersion of newborn NSCs and tangential growth of the cerebral wall. These findings clarify functional roles for IKNM in NSC biology and identify tissue dysmorphogenesis resulting from impaired IKNM as a factor in autism risk, developmental brain disabilities, and neural tube birth defects.

published proceedings

  • Cell Rep

altmetric score

  • 92.084

author list (cited authors)

  • Xie, Z., & Bankaitis, V. A.

citation count

  • 3

complete list of authors

  • Xie, Zhigang||Bankaitis, Vytas A

publication date

  • January 2022