Generation of neurons and astrocytes from isolated cells of the adult mammalian central nervous system

Science. 1992 Mar 27;255(5052):1707-10. doi: 10.1126/science.1553558.


Neurogenesis in the mammalian central nervous system is believed to end in the period just after birth; in the mouse striatum no new neurons are produced after the first few days after birth. In this study, cells isolated from the striatum of the adult mouse brain were induced to proliferate in vitro by epidermal growth factor. The proliferating cells initially expressed nestin, an intermediate filament found in neuroepithelial stem cells, and subsequently developed the morphology and antigenic properties of neurons and astrocytes. Newly generated cells with neuronal morphology were immunoreactive for gamma-aminobutyric acid and substance P, two neurotransmitters of the adult striatum in vivo. Thus, cells of the adult mouse striatum have the capacity to divide and differentiate into neurons and astrocytes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Astrocytes / cytology*
  • Cell Division / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Corpus Striatum / cytology*
  • Culture Media, Serum-Free
  • Epidermal Growth Factor / pharmacology
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein / metabolism
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Intermediate Filament Proteins / metabolism
  • Intermediate Filaments / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins*
  • Nestin
  • Neurons / cytology*
  • Phosphopyruvate Hydratase / metabolism


  • Culture Media, Serum-Free
  • Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein
  • Intermediate Filament Proteins
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Nes protein, mouse
  • Nestin
  • Epidermal Growth Factor
  • Phosphopyruvate Hydratase