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Nat Neurosci. 1999 Oct;2(10):894-7.

Restoring production of hippocampal neurons in old age.

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Laboratory of Molecular Biology, National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892, USA.


The production of hippocampal granule neurons continues throughout adulthood but dramatically decreases in old age. Here we show that reducing corticosteroid levels in aged rats restored the rate of cell proliferation, resulting in increased numbers of new granule neurons. This result indicates that the neuronal precursor population in the dentate gyrus remains stable into old age, but that neurogenesis is normally slowed by high levels of corticosteroids. The findings further suggest that decreased neurogenesis may contribute to age-related memory deficits associated with high corticosteroids, and that these deficits may be reversible.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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