Neurogenesis is enhanced by stroke in multiple new stem cell niches along the ventricular system at sites of high BBB permeability

Ruihe Lin, Jingli Cai, Cody Nathan, Xiaotao Wei, Stephanie Schleidt, Robert Rosenwasser, Lorraine Iacovitti*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


Previous studies have established the subventricular (SVZ) and subgranular (SGZ) zones as sites of neurogenesis in the adult forebrain (. Doetsch et al., 1999a; Doetsch, 2003a). Work from our laboratory further indicated that midline structures known as circumventricular organs (CVOs) also serve as adult neural stem cell (NSC) niches (Bennett et al., 2009, 2010). In the quiescent rat brain, NSC proliferation remains low in all of these sites. Therefore, we recently examined whether ischemic stroke injury (MCAO) or sustained intraventricular infusion of the mitogen bFGF could trigger an up-regulation in NSC proliferation, inducing neurogenesis and gliogenesis. Our data show that both stroke and bFGF induce a dramatic and long-lasting (14. day) rise in the proliferation (BrdU. +) of nestin. +. Sox2. +. GFAP. + NSCs capable of differentiating into Olig2. + glial progenitors, GFAP. +. nestin-astrocyte progenitors and Dcx. + neurons in the SVZ and CVOs. Moreover, because of the upsurge in NSC number, it was possible to detect for the first time several novel stem cell niches along the third (3V) and fourth (4V) ventricles. Importantly, a common feature of all brain niches was a rich vasculature with a blood-brain-barrier (BBB) that was highly permeable to systemically injected sodium fluorescein. These data indicate that stem cell niches are more extensive than once believed and exist at multiple sites along the entire ventricular system, consistent with the potential for widespread neurogenesis and gliogenesis in the adult brain, particularly after injury. We further suggest that because of their leaky BBB, stem cell niches are well-positioned to respond to systemic injury-related cues which may be important for stem-cell mediated brain repair.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)229-239
Number of pages11
JournalNeurobiology of Disease
StatePublished - Feb 1 2015


  • Blood brain barrier
  • CVO
  • Neural stem cell
  • Neurogenesis
  • Stroke

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology


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