Neurogenesis does not stop abruptly at birth, but persists in specific brain regions throughout life. The neural stem cells (NSCs) located in the largest germinal region of the forebrain, the ventricular-subventricular zone (V-SVZ), replenish olfactory neurons throughout life. However, V-SVZ NSCs are heterogeneous: they have different embryonic origins and give rise to distinct neuronal subtypes depending on their location. In this Review, we discuss how this spatial heterogeneity arises, how it affects NSC biology, and why its consideration in future studies is crucial for understanding general principles guiding NSC self-renewal, differentiation and specification.
Keywords: Neurogenesis; Patterning; Specification; Subventricular zone; Transcription factors.
© 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.