Lien vers Pubmed [PMID] – 17001868
Bull. Acad. Natl. Med. 2006 Feb;190(2):385-400; discussion 400-2
Neural stem cells have recently been found in the central nervous system of adult rodents and humans. In defined conditions, these multipotent cells can generate the three major cell types of the nervous system (neurons, oligodendrocytes and astrocytes). These findings raise questions on the functional role of neural stem cells in the adult brain, and point to the possibility of novel therapeutic approaches. We have been investigating the functional consequences of neural stem cells for the adult circuits of the olfactory system. We are currently investigating this unexpected juvenile characteristic for cognitive functions. For instance, we are exploring the potential of brain adaptation brought into play by adult neurogenesis. Our most recent studies show that neurogenesis contributes to long-term adjustment of the mature brain. Many questions remain to be answered, however. To what extent can we distinguish and compare neuronal production during embryogenesis and adulthood? How does a newborn cell migrate and find its target? How is cellular fate decided? By showing correlations between the regenerative capacities and cognitive functions of the adult brain, our results have interesting implications for the use of endogenous neuronal stem cells for brain repair in patients with neurodegenerative diseases or brain injury due to stroke or trauma.