Behavior of hippocampal stem/progenitor cells following grafting into the injured aged hippocampus. Academic Article uri icon


  • Multipotent neural stem/progenitor cells (NSCs) from the embryonic hippocampus are potentially useful as donor cells to repopulate the degenerated regions of the aged hippocampus after stroke, epilepsy, or Alzheimer's disease. However, the efficacy of the NSC grafting strategy for repairing the injured aged hippocampus is unknown. To address this issue, we expanded FGF-2-responsive NSCs from the hippocampus of embryonic day 14 green fluorescent protein-expressing transgenic mice as neurospheres in vitro and grafted them into the hippocampus of 24-month-old F344 rats 4 days after CA3 region injury. Engraftment, migration, and neuronal/glial differentiation of cells derived from NSCs were analyzed 1 month after grafting. Differentiation of neurospheres in culture dishes or after placement on organotypic hippocampal slice cultures demonstrated that these cells had the ability to generate considerable numbers of neurons, astrocytes, and oligodendrocytes. Following grafting into the injured aged hippocampus, cells derived from neurospheres survived and dispersed, but exhibited no directed migration into degenerated or intact hippocampal cell layers. Phenotypic analyses of graft-derived cells revealed neuronal differentiation in 3%-5% of cells, astrocytic differentiation in 28% of cells, and oligodendrocytic differentiation in 6%-10% cells. The results demonstrate for the first time that NSCs derived from the fetal hippocampus survive and give rise to all three CNS phenotypes following transplantation into the injured aged hippocampus. However, grafted NSCs do not exhibit directed migration into lesioned areas or widespread neuronal differentiation, suggesting that direct grafting of primitive NSCs is not adequate for repair of the injured aged brain without priming the microenvironment.

published proceedings

  • J Neurosci Res

author list (cited authors)

  • Shetty, A. K., Rao, M. S., & Hattiangady, B.

citation count

  • 32

complete list of authors

  • Shetty, Ashok K||Rao, Muddanna S||Hattiangady, Bharathi

publication date

  • November 2008