by John McLachlan, PhD

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    Hello, and welcome to our lecture on neurulation, formation of the neural tube and some of its derivatives. What we’re going to look at in this lecture is the formation of the neural tube itself, the early stages of brain development, and some defects that can arise during the formation of the neural tube. As so often, we have to go back to the very early stages of gastrulation, where in the diagram at the top, you can see the amniotic cavity, below that, you can see the yolk sac, and in between the two, is the bilaminar disk. And if you were inside the amniotic cavity looking down at the floor, then you would see a streak beginning to form. That streak is the marker for where the neural tube is eventually going to develop in the embryo. What happens is that the ectoderm will rise up in either side of that primitive streak and begins to fold towards the midline. And as it folds towards the midline, so the cells at the very tip are seen as a neural crest cells and those will be different during subsequent development. This is something all the way along the length of the embryo, as we shall see. And when the folds meet each other, some neural crest cells are left behind as a separate and detached tissue but the neural tube is forming a discrete structure underneath the ectoderm running the whole length of the embryo. If we’re to look at that from above, so again, imagine we’re in the amniotic cavity looking down, you can see in the middle of the 20-day picture on the right hand side that the two edges of the ectoderm are beginning to approach each other, ready to fuse, round about the mid position...

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Neurulation by John McLachlan, PhD is from the course Embryology: Early Stages. It contains the following chapters:

    • The Formation of the Primitive Streak
    • Folding of the Embryo and Regionalisation of the brain
    • Varieties of Dysraphic Condition
    • Neural Tube Defects

    Author of lecture Neurulation

     John McLachlan, PhD

    John McLachlan, PhD

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