Adult neurogenesis and hippocampal function

Claire Rampon
Centre de Recherches sur la Cognition Animale (CRCA)
Centre de Biologie Intégrative (CBI)
Université Toulouse

In adult mammals, neural progenitors located in the dentate gyrus retain their ability to generate neurons throughout life.
life. In rodents, increased production of new granule neurons is associated with improved memory capacity, while decreased hippocampal neurogenesis leads to impaired memory performance in several memory tasks. In mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease, neurogenesis is impaired and the granule neurons generated fail to integrate existing networks.
By genetically manipulating adult-born neurons, we were able to improve their connectivity, which was sufficient to restore spatial memory in these mice. By studying the cellular mechanisms involved, we uncovered that neurogenesis is highly sensitive to mitochondrial defects, leading to spatial memory disorders which can be detected at an early stage of Alzheimer’s disease. Our results demonstrate that endogenous neural stem cells can be manipulated to enable cognitive enhancement, and that amplification of mitochondrial function in new neurons contributes to restoring hippocampal function.

Invited by Jérôme Epsztein

Monday March 18th at 11am – INMED conference room 

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