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Neuron. 2014 Jul 16;83(2):283-308. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2014.06.010.

Glial development: the crossroads of regeneration and repair in the CNS.

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Center for Neuroscience Research, Children's National Medical Center, Washington, DC 20010, USA. Electronic address:
Department of Neuroscience and Center for Cell and Gene Therapy, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA. Electronic address:


Given the complexities of the mammalian CNS, its regeneration is viewed as the holy grail of regenerative medicine. Extraordinary efforts have been made to understand developmental neurogenesis, with the hopes of clinically applying this knowledge. CNS regeneration also involves glia, which comprises at least 50% of the cellular constituency of the brain and is involved in all forms of injury and disease response, recovery, and regeneration. Recent developmental studies have given us unprecedented insight into the processes that regulate the generation of CNS glia. Because restorative processes often parallel those found in development, we will peer through the lens of developmental gliogenesis to gain a clearer understanding of the processes that underlie glial regeneration under pathological conditions. Specifically, this review will focus on key signaling pathways that regulate astrocyte and oligodendrocyte development and describe how these mechanisms are reutilized in these populations during regeneration and repair after CNS injury.

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