Signaling in adult neurogenesis: From stem cell niche to neuronal networks
The mechanisms that determine why neurogenesis is restricted to few regions of the adult brain in mammals, in contrast to its more widespread nature in other vertebrates such as zebrafish, remain to be fully understood. The local environment must provide key signals that instruct stem cell and neurogenic fate, because non-neurogenic progenitors can be instructed towards neurogenesis in this environment. Here, we discuss the recent progress in understanding key factors in the local stem cell niche of the adult mammalian brain, including surprising sources of new signals such as endothelial cells, complement factors and microglia. Moreover, new insights have been gained into how neuronal diversity is instructed in adult neurogenesis, prompting a new view of stem and progenitor cell heterogeneity in the adult mammalian brain.
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