Shaping faces: genetic and epigenetic control of craniofacial morphogenesis.

Bibliographic Collection: 
Publication Type: Journal Article
Authors: Selleri, Licia; Rijli, Filippo M
Year of Publication: 2023
Journal: Nat Rev Genet
Volume: 24
Issue: 9
Pagination: 610-626
Date Published: 2023 Sep
Publication Language: eng
ISSN: 1471-0064

Major differences in facial morphology distinguish vertebrate species. Variation of facial traits underlies the uniqueness of human individuals, and abnormal craniofacial morphogenesis during development leads to birth defects that significantly affect quality of life. Studies during the past 40 years have advanced our understanding of the molecular mechanisms that establish facial form during development, highlighting the crucial roles in this process of a multipotent cell type known as the cranial neural crest cell. In this Review, we discuss recent advances in multi-omics and single-cell technologies that enable genes, transcriptional regulatory networks and epigenetic landscapes to be closely linked to the establishment of facial patterning and its variation, with an emphasis on normal and abnormal craniofacial morphogenesis. Advancing our knowledge of these processes will support important developments in tissue engineering, as well as the repair and reconstruction of the abnormal craniofacial complex.

DOI: 10.1038/s41576-023-00594-w
Alternate Journal: Nat Rev Genet