A unifying hypothesis on mammalian neural stem cell properties in the adult hippocampus

Michael A. Bonaguidi, Juan Song, Guo Li Ming, Hongjun Song

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

120 Scopus citations


Continuously generated new neurons promote circuitry plasticity within specialized regions and contribute to specific functions of the adult mammalian brain. A number of recent studies have investigated the cellular origin of adult neurogenesis in the hippocampus, yielding divergent models of neural stem cell behavior. An essential question remains whether these models are overlapping or fundamentally discrete. We review evidence that primary neural precursors in the adult hippocampus exhibit significant heterogeneity in their properties of self-renewal, multi-lineage differentiation and regulation, representing a range from unipotential committed precursors to bona fide self-renewing multipotent neural stem cells. We further present a testable unifying hypothesis of adult neural stem cell behavior in vivo to outline a common framework for future studies of molecular and cellular mechanisms regulating adult neural stem cells and how these cells may contribute to hippocampal function and repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)754-761
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Opinion in Neurobiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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