Histochemistry and Cell Biology

, Volume 151, Issue 3, pp 239–248 | Cite as

Effects of N-cadherin on neuronal migration during chicken optic tectum development

  • Ciqing Yang
  • Xiaoying Li
  • Lihong Guan
  • Shuanqing Li
  • Liang Qiao
  • Juntang LinEmail author
Original Paper


N-cadherin, a member of the cadherin family, plays an important role in neural development. In addition, N-cadherin has been reported to be crucial in neuronal migration, axonal outgrowth, and axonal path-finding. However, the mechanism underlying the effects of N-cadherin in neuronal migration is not entirely clear. In this study, we investigated the overexpression or knockdown of N-cadherin in the optic tectum during chicken embryo development, and then analyzed the effect of N-cadherin on neuronal migration. The results showed that compared with the control group, in the N-cadherin knockdown group, the neuronal migration of the optic tectum was significantly affected and could not arrive at destination. The stratum griseum central layer of the optic tectum mainly includes multipolar neurons, which could not be formed after the knockdown of N-cadherin, and more neurons form the bipolar or monopolar neurons compared with the control group. Compared with the control group, more cells stayed in the neuroepithelium layer. The axonal length in the optic tectum was significantly (P < 0.001) shorter in the N-cadherin knockdown group than in the control group. These results reveal that the knockdown of N-cadherin mainly affects the length of axons and formation of multipolar neurons in the development of the chicken optic tectum, which eventually results in the inhibition of neuronal migration.


N-cadherin In ovo electroporation Optic tectum Chicken embryo Neuronal migration 



Central nervous system




Human U6


Green fluorescent protein


Tris-buffered saline






Stratum opticum




Stratum griseum central


Stratum griseum et fibrosum superficiale



This work was supported by a grant from National Science Foundation of China (Nos. 81771226, 81600987), the Henan Province Natural Science Foundation (No. 162300410214), the support project for the Disciplinary group of Psychology and Neuroscience, Xinxiang Medical University (Nos. 2016PN-KFKT-03, 20172DCG-03), the Science and Technology Innovation Talents Support Program of Henan Universities and Xinxiang City (Nos. 14HASTIT032, CXRC16003), Xinxiang major science and technology projects (No. ZD17008), the Henan Province University youth researcher support program project (No. 2015GGJS-133), the PhD Research Startup Foundation (No. 505090) of Xinxiang Medical University, Henan Key Laboratory of Medical Tissue Regeneration Open Project (No. KFKT15002).

Author contributions

Conceived and designed the experiments: Juntang Lin. Performed the experiments: Ciqing Yang, Xiaoying Li, Lihong Guan, Shuanqing Li, Liang Qiao. Analyzed the data: Ciqing Yang. Wrote the paper: Ciqing Yang.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no known conflicts of interest associated with this publication.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Xinxiang Key Laboratory of Neural Development, College of Life Science and TechnologyXinxiang Medical UniversityXinxiangChina
  2. 2.Henan Key Laboratory of Medical Tissue RegenerationXinxiangChina
  3. 3.College of Biomedical EngineeringXinxiang Medical UniversityXinxiangChina

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