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Nat Rev Neurosci. 2006 Nov;7(11):883-90. Epub 2006 Oct 11.

Patterns of neural stem and progenitor cell division may underlie evolutionary cortical expansion.

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  • 1Institute for Stem Cell and Tissue Biology, University of California, San Francisco, 513 Parnassus Ave, HSW, 1201, San Francisco, California, USA. kriegsteina@stemcell.ucsf.edu


The dramatic evolutionary expansion of the cerebral cortex of Homo sapiens underlies our unique higher cortical functions, and therefore bears on the ultimate issue of what makes us human. Recent insights into developmental events during early proliferative stages of cortical development indicate how neural stem and progenitor cells might interact to produce cortical expansion during development, and could shed light on evolutionary changes in cortical structure.

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