Spatiotemporal control of cell cycle acceleration during axolotl spinal cord regeneration

Emanuel Cura Costa, Leo Otsuki, Aida Rodrigo Albors, Elly M. Tanaka, Osvaldo Chara (Lead / Corresponding author)

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    15 Citations (Scopus)
    64 Downloads (Pure)


    Axolotls are uniquely able to resolve spinal cord injuries, but little is known about the mechanisms underlying spinal cord regeneration. We previously found that tail amputation leads to reactivation of a developmental-like program in spinal cord ependymal cells (Rodrigo Albors et al., 2015), characterized by a high-proliferation zone emerging 4 days post-amputation (Rost et al., 2016). What underlies this spatiotemporal pattern of cell proliferation, however, remained unknown. Here, we use modeling, tightly linked to experimental data, to demonstrate that this regenerative response is consistent with a signal that recruits ependymal cells during ~85 hours after amputation within ~830 μm of the injury. We adapted Fluorescent Ubiquitination-based Cell Cycle Indicator (FUCCI) technology to axolotls (AxFUCCI) to visualize cell cycles in vivo. AxFUCCI axolotls confirmed the predicted appearance time and size of the injury-induced recruitment zone and revealed cell cycle synchrony between ependymal cells. Our modeling and imaging move us closer to understanding bona fide spinal cord regeneration.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article numbere55665
    Number of pages30
    Early online date14 May 2021
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2021


    • computational biology
    • developmental biology
    • systems biology
    • axolotl
    • cell proliferation
    • cell cycle
    • Computational and Systems Biology
    • FUCCI
    • computational model
    • Research Advance
    • Axolotl
    • spinal cord regeneration
    • Developmental Biology

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
    • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
    • Neuroscience(all)


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