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Neuroscience. 2010 Mar 10;166(1):185-94. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2009.12.014. Epub 2009 Dec 16.

The NG2 proteoglycan promotes oligodendrocyte progenitor proliferation and developmental myelination.

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Burnham Institute for Medical Research, 10901 N Torrey Pines Road, La Jolla, CA 92037, USA.


The NG2 proteoglycan has been shown to promote proliferation and motility in a variety of cell types. The presence of NG2 on oligodendrocyte progenitor cells (OPCs) suggests that the proteoglycan may be a factor in expansion of the OPC pool to fill the entire CNS prior to OPC differentiation to form myelinating oligodendrocytes. Comparisons of postnatal cerebellar myelination in wild type and NG2 null mice reveal reduced numbers of OPCs in developing white matter of the NG2 null mouse. Quantification of BrdU incorporation shows that reduced proliferation is a key reason for this OPC shortage, with the peak of OPC proliferation delayed by 4-5 days in the absence of NG2. As a result of the subnormal pool of OPCs, there is also a delay in production of mature oligodendrocytes and myelinating processes in the NG2 null cerebellum. NG2 may promote OPC proliferation via enhancement of growth factor signaling or mediation of OPC interaction with unmyelinated axons.

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