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04.01.18 Glial cells create adaptive niche for neural stem cell lineages in Drosophila brain

last modified Jan 17, 2018 01:46 PM
In this Elife paper, Speder & Brand show how both nutritional and local cues stimulate cortex glial cells to create a membrane sheath around each proliferating neural stem cell lineage
04.01.18 Glial cells create adaptive niche for neural stem cell lineages in Drosophila brain

Fig 1 (extract): Neural stem cells and their lineages are progressively enclosed in cortex glial chambers.


Systemic and local cues drive neural stem cell niche remodelling during neurogenesis in Drosophila

Speder P & Brand AH (2018) Elife. Jan 4;7. pii: e30413.

DOI: 10.7554/eLife.30413



Successful neurogenesis requires adequate proliferation of neural stem cells (NSCs) and their progeny, followed by neuronal differentiation, maturation and survival. NSCs inhabit a complex cellular microenvironment, the niche, which influences their behaviour.

To ensure sustained neurogenesis, niche cells must respond to extrinsic, environmental changes whilst fulfilling the intrinsic requirements of the neurogenic program and adapting their roles accordingly. However, very little is known about how different niche cells adjust their properties to such inputs.

Here, we show that nutritional and NSC-derived signals induce the remodelling of Drosophila cortex glia, adapting this glial niche to the evolving needs of NSCs. First, nutrition-induced activation of PI3K/Akt drives the cortex glia to expand their membrane processes. Second, when NSCs emerge from quiescence to resume proliferation, they signal to glia to promote membrane remodelling and the formation of a bespoke structure around each NSC lineage. The remodelled glial niche is essential for newborn neuron survival.



Read more about research in the Brand lab.

Watch Andrea Brand describe her research on video.

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