Fibroblast growth factor 2 is required for maintaining the neural stem cell pool in the mouse brain subventricular zone

Dev Neurosci. Mar-Aug 2004;26(2-4):181-96. doi: 10.1159/000082136.


Cells within the subventricular zone (SVZ) express basic Fgf (Fgf2) and Fgf receptor proteins. We show that the absence of Fgf2 gene products reduces by 50% the dividing progenitor population of the anterior SVZ (SVZa) without changing their cell cycle time. Every 2-3 cell cycles of the SVZa progenitor cell population, 30,000 newly generated neurons capable of long-term survival are added to the glomerular layer of the olfactory bulb. Fgf2 knockout mice have smaller olfactory bulbs due to decreased output of these newly generated cells into the bulbs. A population of slow-dividing neural stem cells (NSCs) residing in the SVZa is identified by its slow cell cycle kinetics (cell cycle approx. 20 days); these cells, called 'S' cells, are negative for glial fibrillary acidic protein and occasionally express brain-lipid-binding protein, a molecular marker of radial glia. The number of these dividing NSCs is reduced from about 13,000 in wild-type to 8,500 cells in Fgf2 knockout mice. Thus, FGF2 regulates the number of proliferative cells and olfactory bulb neurogenesis by maintaining a slow-dividing stem cell pool within the SVZa.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomarkers
  • Brain / cytology
  • Brain / growth & development
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Cell Cycle Proteins / genetics
  • Cell Differentiation / physiology*
  • Cell Division / genetics
  • Cell Lineage / physiology
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cerebral Cortex / cytology
  • Cerebral Cortex / growth & development
  • Cerebral Cortex / metabolism
  • Down-Regulation / physiology
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lateral Ventricles / cytology
  • Lateral Ventricles / metabolism*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Neuroglia / metabolism
  • Neurons / cytology
  • Neurons / metabolism*
  • Olfactory Bulb / cytology
  • Olfactory Bulb / growth & development
  • Olfactory Bulb / metabolism
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / genetics
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Receptor, Fibroblast Growth Factor, Type 2
  • Receptors, Fibroblast Growth Factor / genetics
  • Receptors, Fibroblast Growth Factor / metabolism*
  • Stem Cells / cytology
  • Stem Cells / metabolism*


  • Biomarkers
  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • Receptors, Fibroblast Growth Factor
  • Fgfr2 protein, mouse
  • Receptor Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
  • Receptor, Fibroblast Growth Factor, Type 2