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Exp Cell Res. 2006 Sep 10;312(15):2851-9. Epub 2006 May 26.

Genetic visualization of neurogenesis.

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Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Medical Nobel Institute, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm SE-17177, Sweden.


Neurons are generated from stem or progenitor cells in discrete areas in the adult brain. The exact temporal and spatial distribution of adult neurogenesis has, however, been difficult to establish because of inherent limitations with the currently used techniques, and there are numerous controversies with regard to whether neurons are generated in specific regions or in response to insults. We describe here the generation of transgenic mice that express conditionally active Cre recombinase under the control of a nestin enhancer element. These mice allow the recombination of reporter alleles specifically in neural stem and progenitor cells and the visualization of their progeny in the adult brain. This offers a simple and efficient way to visualize live adult born neurons without the caveats of currently used techniques.

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