Adult neurogenesis is a phenomenon in which neural stem cells differentiate and mature to generate new neurons in the adult brain. In mammals, the sites where adult neurogenesis occurs are limited to the subgranular zone (SGZ) of the hippocampal dentate gyrus and the subventricular zone. In the hippocampus, newly generated neurons migrate into the granule cell layer (GCL) and are integrated into neural circuits. Previous studies have revealed that CRMP4, a member of the CRMP family, is expressed in immature neurons in the hippocampal SGZ of the adult brain. However, the role of CRMP4 in adult neurogenesis is unknown. To study the role of CRMP4 in hippocampal adult neurogenesis, we compared adult neurogenesis between wild type and CRMP4-/- mice. In CRMP4-/- mice, the number of doublecortin (DCX)-positive cells was comparable to that in wild-type mice, and some DCX-positive cells were ectopically located in the granule cell layer, suggesting that CRMP4 is involved in the migration of adult neurogenesis. In addition, the number of calretinin-positive new neurons in the SGZ was significantly increased, whereas the number of EdU/NeuN-double positive neurons was decreased in CRMP4-/- mice, suggesting that CRMP4 plays an important role in neuronal maturation. Because CRMP4 is expressed in immature neurons, its expression may regulate the migration from the SGZ to the GCL during neuronal maturation in hippocampal adult neurogenesis.
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