For more than a decade, we have known that the human brain harbors progenitor cells capable of becoming mature neurons in the adult human brain. Since the original landmark article by Eriksson et al. in 1998 (Nat Med 4:1313-1317), there have been many studies investigating the effect that depression, epilepsy, Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's disease, and Parkinson's disease have on the germinal zones in the adult human brain. Of particular interest is the demonstration that there are far fewer progenitor cells in the hippocampal subgranular zone (SGZ) compared with the subventricular zone (SVZ) in the human brain. Furthermore, the quantity of progenitor cell proliferation in human neurodegenerative diseases differs from that of animal models of neurodegenerative diseases; there is minimal progenitor proliferation in the SGZ and extensive proliferation in the SVZ in the human. In this review, we will present the data from a range of human and rodent studies from which we can compare the amount of proliferation of cells in the SVZ and SGZ in different neurodegenerative diseases.
Copyright © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.