The precerebellar system provides the principal input to the cerebellum and is essential for coordinated motor activity. Using a FLP recombinase-based fate mapping approach, we provide direct evidence in the mouse that this ventral brainstem system derives from dorsally located rhombic neuroepithelium. Moreover, by fate mapping at the resolution of a gene expression pattern, we have uncovered an unexpected subdivision within the precerebellar primordium: embryonic expression of Wnt1 appears to identify the class of precerebellar progenitors that will later project mossy fibers from the brainstem to the cerebellum, as opposed to the class of precerebellar neurons that project climbing fibers. Differential gene expression therefore appears to demarcate two populations within the precerebellar primordium, grouping progenitors by their future type of axonal projection and synaptic partner rather than by final topographical position.
Rodriguez, C. I., & Dymecki, S. M. (2000). Origin of the precerebellar system. Neuron, 27(3), 475–486. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0896-6273(00)00059-3