Effects of neuregulin-1 administration on neurogenesis in the adult mouse hippocampus, and characterization of immature neurons along the septotemporal axis

Sci Rep. 2016 Jul 29;6:30467. doi: 10.1038/srep30467.


Adult hippocampal neurogenesis is associated with learning and affective behavioural regulation. Its diverse functionality is segregated along the septotemporal axis from the dorsal to ventral hippocampus. However, features distinguishing immature neurons in these regions have yet to be characterized. Additionally, although we have shown that administration of the neurotrophic factor neuregulin-1 (NRG1) selectively increases proliferation and overall neurogenesis in the mouse ventral dentate gyrus (DG), likely through ErbB3, NRG1's effects on intermediate neurogenic stages in immature neurons are unknown. We examined whether NRG1 administration increases DG ErbB3 phosphorylation. We labeled adultborn cells using BrdU, then administered NRG1 to examine in vivo neurogenic effects on immature neurons with respect to cell survival, morphology, and synaptogenesis. We also characterized features of immature neurons along the septotemporal axis. We found that neurogenic effects of NRG1 are temporally and subregionally specific to proliferation in the ventral DG. Particular morphological features differentiate immature neurons in the dorsal and ventral DG, and cytogenesis differed between these regions. Finally, we identified synaptic heterogeneity surrounding the granule cell layer. These results indicate neurogenic involvement of NRG1-induced antidepressant-like behaviour is particularly associated with increased ventral DG cell proliferation, and identify novel distinctions between dorsal and ventral hippocampal neurogenic development.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aging / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Cell Differentiation / drug effects*
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Dendrites / drug effects
  • Dendrites / metabolism
  • Dentate Gyrus / metabolism
  • Hippocampus / cytology*
  • Male
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Neuregulin-1 / administration & dosage*
  • Neuregulin-1 / pharmacology*
  • Neurogenesis / drug effects*
  • Neurons / cytology*
  • Neurons / drug effects
  • Phosphorylation / drug effects
  • Receptor, ErbB-3 / metabolism
  • Synapses / drug effects
  • Synapses / metabolism


  • Neuregulin-1
  • ErbB3 protein, mouse
  • Receptor, ErbB-3