Neuroscience researchers show how astrocytes control the generation of new neurons in the brain. “In the brain, astrocytes control how many new neurons are formed from neural stem cells and survive to integrate into the existing neuronal networks. Astrocytes do this by secreting specific molecules but also by much less understood direct cell-cell interactions with stem cells”, says Prof. Milos Pekny.
A neuron’s fate was thought to be determined by the timing of its birth date. Neuroscientists recently showed that there is a distinct stem cell progenitor that gives rise to upper layer neurons, regardless of birth date or place.
Team reconstituted stem cells’ “family tree” A Johns Hopkins team has discovered in young adult mice that a lone brain stem cell is capable not only of replacing itself and giving rise to specialized neurons and glia – important types of brain cells – but also of taking a wholly unexpected path: generating two new [...]