Finding their way: themes in germ cell migration

Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2016 Oct;42:128-137. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2016 Jul 30.


Embryonic germ cell migration is a vital component of the germline lifecycle. The translocation of germ cells from the place of origin to the developing somatic gonad involves several processes including passive movements with underlying tissues, transepithelial migration, cell adhesion dynamics, the establishment of environmental guidance cues and the ability to sustain directed migration. How germ cells accomplish these feats in established model organisms will be discussed in this review, with a focus on recent discoveries and themes conserved across species.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Movement*
  • Epithelial Cells / cytology
  • Germ Cells / cytology*
  • Gonads / cytology
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological