The authors review current views on of the embryogenesis of the neural tube defects (NTDs) myelomeningocele and anencephaly. In this context, the following four approaches to the study of NTDs are discussed: normal morphogenesis and timing of early human neural development from conception to the ascent of the conus medullaris; mechanical and molecular biology of neural tube closure derived from experimental and animal models; morphological and biomechanical features of the NTDs myelomeningocele and anencephaly; and the experimental evidence for the importance of both genetic and environmental influences on human NTDs. Although considerable insight into both normal neural tube closure and the factor(s) by which this process may be disrupted has been reported in recent years, the exact mechanism(s) by which human myelomeningoceles and anencephaly arise remain elusive.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Neurology