, Volume 198, Issue 6, pp 427-449
Date: 11 Apr 2012

Adult neurogenesis in the brain of the Mozambique tilapia, Oreochromis mossambicus

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Although the generation of new neurons in the adult nervous system (‘adult neurogenesis’) has been studied intensively in recent years, little is known about this phenomenon in non-mammalian vertebrates. Here, we examined the generation, migration, and differentiation of new neurons and glial cells in the Mozambique tilapia (Oreochromis mossambicus), a representative of one of the largest vertebrate taxonomic orders, the perciform fish. The vast majority of new cells in the brain are born in specific proliferation zones of the olfactory bulb; the dorsal and ventral telencephalon; the periventricular nucleus of the posterior tuberculum, optic tectum, and nucleus recessi lateralis of the diencephalon; and the valvula cerebelli, corpus cerebelli, and lobus caudalis of the cerebellum. As shown in the olfactory bulb and the lateral part of the valvula cerebelli, some of the young cells migrate from their site of origin to specific target areas. Labeling of mitotic cells with the thymidine analog 5-bromo-2′-deoxyuridine, combined with immunostaining against the neuron-specific marker protein Hu or against the astroglial marker glial fibrillary acidic protein demonstrated differentiation of the adult-born cells into both neurons and glia. Taken together, the present investigation supports the hypothesis that adult neurogenesis is an evolutionarily conserved vertebrate trait.