A majority of studies on neuronal growth cones focus on the features that particular groups of neurons share. In contrast, questions such as how specific growth cones respond very differently to the same extrinsic cues require cell-specific experimentation. The most succinct cell-specific growth cone responses occur during synaptic targeting. Recent studies have examined one specific growth cone, the Drosophila RP3 motoneuron growth cone, in variously altered microenvironments. In this review, we summarize how such studies are beginning to uncover the repertoire of extrinsic cues that influence the synaptic targeting of a single growth cone.
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