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Stem Cells Dev. 2011 Dec;20(12):2037-51. doi: 10.1089/scd.2011.0279. Epub 2011 Aug 12.

Ischemia-induced neural stem/progenitor cells in the pia mater following cortical infarction.

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Institute for Advanced Medical Sciences, Hyogo College of Medicine, Hyogo, Japan.


Increasing evidence shows that neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs) can be activated in the nonconventional neurogenic zones such as the cortex following ischemic stroke. However, the precise origin, identity, and subtypes of the ischemia-induced NSPCs (iNSPCs), which can contribute to cortical neurogenesis, is currently still unclear. In our present study, using an adult mouse cortical infarction model, we found that the leptomeninges (pia mater), which is widely distributed within and closely associated with blood vessels as microvascular pericytes/perivascular cells throughout central nervous system (CNS), have NSPC activity in response to ischemia and can generate neurons. These observations indicate that microvascular pericytes residing near blood vessels that are distributed from the leptomeninges to the cortex are potential sources of iNSPCs for neurogenesis following cortical infarction. In addition, our results propose a novel concept that the leptomeninges, which cover the entire brain, have an important role in CNS restoration following brain injury such as stroke.

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