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Am J Pathol. 2006 Jul;169(1):154-64.

Chronically increased transforming growth factor-beta1 strongly inhibits hippocampal neurogenesis in aged mice.

Author information

  • 1Department of Neurology and Neurological Sciences, Stanford University School of Medicine, SUMC Rm. 343A, Stanford, CA 94305-5235, USA.

Abstract

There is increasing evidence that hippocampal learning correlates strongly with neurogenesis in the adult brain. Increases in neurogenesis after brain injury also correlate with improved outcomes. With aging the capacity to generate new neurons decreases dramatically, both under normal conditions and after injury. How this decrease occurs is not fully understood, but we hypothesized that transforming growth factor (TGF)-beta1, a cell cycle regulator that rapidly increases after injury and with age, might play a role. We found that chronic overproduction of TGF-beta1 from astrocytes almost completely blocked the generation of new neurons in aged transgenic mice. Even young adult TGF-beta1 mice had 60% fewer immature, doublecortin-positive, hippocampal neurons than wild-type littermate controls. Bromodeoxyuridine labeling of dividing cells in 2-month-old TGF-beta1 mice confirmed this decrease in neuro-genesis and revealed a similar decrease in astrogenesis. Treatment of early neural progenitor cells with TGF-beta1 inhibited their proliferation. This strongly suggests that TGF-beta1 directly affects these cells before their differentiation into neurons and astrocytes. Together, these data show that TGF-beta1 is a potent inhibitor of hippocampal neural progenitor cell proliferation in adult mice and suggest that it plays a key role in limiting injury and age-related neurogenesis.

PMID:
16816369
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1698757
Free PMC Article

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