Feng, LY (reprint author), Chinese Acad Sci, Shanghai Inst Biol Sci, Shanghai Inst Mat Med, 555 Zu Chongzhi Rd, Shanghai 201203, Peoples R China,email@example.com
In the rodent hippocampus, the radial glial scaffold consists of radial glial cells (RGCs) and plays important roles in neurogenesis in this area after birth. However, the mechanisms that maintain the radial glial scaffold in the postnatal dentate gyrus (DG) area remain elusive. In the present work, we studied the role of Neuregulin (NRG) in the formation and maintenance of the radial glial scaffold in the hippocampal DG of postnatal rats using slice culture. We found that ErbB4 receptors were expressed in vimentin-positive RGCs in DG of postnatal day 6 (P6) rats. Treatment with NRG and Ab-3, the inhibitor of ErbB4, revealed that in P6 rats exogenous NRG promoted the proliferation of Vimentin-positive RGCs in DG. On the other hand, endogenous NRG was found necessary for maintaining the characteristic morphological and immunohistochemical features of these cells. These results indicated that NRG plays a critical role in the formation and maintenance of the radial glial scaffold in the hippocampal DG of postnatal rats.