Single or multiple oligodendroglial lineages: a controversy

Glia. 2000 Jan 15;29(2):143-8.


The text books all say oligodendrocytes are the last cell to arise during development. The analysis of the spatio-temporal pattern of expression of plp/dm-20 during embryonic development in both the chick and the mouse provides evidence that the induction of oligodendrocyte occurs much earlier than we thought. In fact, it seems as though these cells must arise nearly simultaneously with neurons and it is just that they do not mature until later. Furthermore, we review the experimental arguments in favor of the existence of at least two, if not more, oligodendrocyte precursor cells: one is defined by the expression of PDGFRalpha, another characterized by expression of plp/dm-20 is independent from PDGF-AA for its proliferation and survival. We then postulate the existence of a third family of yet unknown origin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain / cytology
  • Brain / embryology*
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Cell Lineage / physiology
  • Cerebral Ventricles / cytology
  • Cerebral Ventricles / metabolism
  • Chick Embryo
  • Mice
  • Myelin Proteolipid Protein / biosynthesis
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins*
  • Oligodendroglia / cytology*
  • Oligodendroglia / metabolism
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor alpha / biosynthesis
  • Spinal Cord / cytology
  • Spinal Cord / embryology
  • Stem Cells / cytology
  • Stem Cells / metabolism


  • Myelin Proteolipid Protein
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Plp1 protein, mouse
  • Receptor, Platelet-Derived Growth Factor alpha