Conservation and divergence of axon guidance mechanisms

Curr Opin Neurobiol. 1999 Oct;9(5):603-15. doi: 10.1016/S0959-4388(99)00021-5.


Analysis of axon guidance mechanisms in vertebrates, Caenorhabditis elegans, and Drosophila melanogaster has led to the identification of several signaling pathways, many of which are strikingly conserved in function. Recent studies indicate that several axon guidance mechanisms are highly conserved in all animals, whereas others, though still conserved in a general sense, show strong evolutionary divergence at a detailed mechanistic level.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Axons / physiology*
  • Biological Evolution*
  • Cell Adhesion / physiology
  • Cell Movement / physiology
  • Membrane Proteins / physiology
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / physiology
  • Protein Tyrosine Phosphatases / physiology
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / physiology
  • Signal Transduction / physiology


  • Membrane Proteins
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Protein Tyrosine Phosphatases