Neurogenesis is continually occurring in two regions within the mammalian central nervous system (CNS) and increasing evidence suggests that it is important for selective learning and memory. How this plasticity is maintained in isolated niches within mature networks has been extensively studied in recent years, and a large body of evidence has accumulated describing many different regulatory factors and points of regulation. In this review, we attempt to organize the current research by summarizing findings affecting early neurogenesis: during proliferation, fate commitment and migration, versus late neurogenesis: including dendritic development, synaptic integration, and survival. We discuss the roles of three different classes of factors regulating early and late phases of neurogenesis: intrinsic factors, extrinsic factors, and neurotransmitters. Finally, we suggest that neurotransmitters may act upstream from extracellular other factors and cell-intrinsic mechanisms by coupling network activity to the niche microenvironment and intracellular machinery to ultimately regulate neurogenesis.
Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.