GABA modulation of SVZ-derived progenitor ventral cell migration

Dev Neurobiol. 2015 Aug;75(8):791-804. doi: 10.1002/dneu.22249. Epub 2014 Dec 9.


The subventricular zone (SVZ) is a proliferative region that provides neurons to olfactory bulb throughout life. The new neurons undergo cell migration from SVZ and travel until they reach their final destination. We previously showed in the early postnatal mouse a ventral migratory subpopulation from SVZ targets the Islands of Calleja (ICC) in the basal forebrain. However, unlike the well-characterized rostral migratory stream, little is known about the guidance mechanisms operating in the ventrally directed migratory pathway. In this study, we examined the role of neurotransmitter γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in SVZ-derived progenitor ventral migration and the involvement of this neurotransmitter in the cytoarchitectual organization of dispersed cells into the tight clusters of the ICC. Our results show that the ventral SVZ cell migration rate was enhanced by GABA acting through a GABAA receptor and that GABA acts as a directional guidance cue for ventral migrating cells. Furthermore, disruption of GABA signaling inhibited the formation of Island clusters in vitro. Taken together, these data suggest that GABA is an important guidance and organizational cue for the Island of Calleja.

Keywords: cell migration; dopamine; granule cell; olfactory bulb; γ-aminobutyric acid.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Cell Movement / drug effects
  • Cell Movement / physiology*
  • GABA-A Receptor Agonists / pharmacology
  • Mice
  • Microdissection
  • Microscopy, Confocal
  • Muscimol / pharmacology
  • Neural Stem Cells / drug effects
  • Neural Stem Cells / physiology*
  • Prosencephalon / drug effects
  • Prosencephalon / growth & development
  • Prosencephalon / physiology*
  • Receptors, GABA-A / metabolism*
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Stem Cell Niche / drug effects
  • Stem Cell Niche / physiology*
  • Tissue Culture Techniques
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid / metabolism*


  • GABA-A Receptor Agonists
  • Receptors, GABA-A
  • Muscimol
  • gamma-Aminobutyric Acid