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Cell Res. 2009 Dec;19(12):1324-33. doi: 10.1038/cr.2009.119. Epub 2009 Oct 13.

Dynamic distribution and stem cell characteristics of Sox1-expressing cells in the cerebellar cortex.

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Wolfson Centre for Stem Cells, Tissue Engineering and Modelling (STEM), University Park - CBS building, University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2RD, United Kingdom.


Bergmann glia cells are a discrete radial glia population surrounding Purkinje cells in the cerebellar cortex. Although Bergmann glia are essential for the development and correct arborization of Purkinje cells, little is known about the regulation of this cell population after the developmental phase. In an effort to characterize this population at the molecular level, we have analyzed marker expression and established that adult Bergmann glia express Sox1, Sox2 and Sox9, a feature otherwise associated with neural stem cells (NSCs). In the present study, we have further analyzed the developmental pattern of Sox1-expressing cells in the developing cerebellum. We report that before becoming restricted to the Purkinje cell layer, Sox1-positive cells are present throughout the immature tissue, and that these cells show characteristics of Bergmann glia progenitors. Our study shows that these progenitors express Sox1, Sox2 and Sox9, a signature maintained throughout cerebellar maturation into adulthood. When isolated in culture, the Sox1-expressing cerebellar population exhibited neurosphere-forming ability, NSC-marker characteristics, and demonstrated multipotency at the clonal level. Our results show that the Bergmann glia population expresses Sox1 during cerebellar development, and that these cells can be isolated and show stem cell characteristics in vitro, suggesting that they could hold a broader potential than previously thought.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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