Adult neurogenesis in eight Megachiropteran species

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Brain and Mind Institute


The present study evaluated, using immunohistochemical methods, the presence and characteristics of proliferating and newly generated neurons in the brain of eight wild-caught adult Megachiropteran species. For the neurogenic patterns observed, direct homologies are evident in other mammalian species; however, there were several distinctions in the presence or absence of proliferating and immature neurons, and migratory streams that provide important clues regarding the use of the brain in the analysis of Chiropteran phylogenetic affinities. In all eight species studied, numerous Ki-67- and doublecortin (DCX)-immunopositive cells were identified in the subventricular zone (SVZ). These cells migrated to the olfactory bulb through a Primate-like rostral migratory stream (RMS) that is composed of dorsal and ventral substreams which merge before entering the olfactory bulb. Some cells were observed emerging from the RMS coursing caudally and dorsally to the rostral neocortex. In the dentate gyrus of all species, Ki-67- and DCX-expressing cells were observed in the granular cell layer and hilus. Similar to Primates, proliferating cells and immature neurons were identified in the SVZ of the temporal horn of Megachiropterans. These cells migrated to the rostral and caudal piriform cortex through a Primate-like temporal migratory stream. Sparsely distributed Ki-67-immunopositive, but DCX-immunonegative, cells were identified in the tectum, brainstem and cerebellum. The observations from this study add to a number of neural characteristics that phylogenetically align Megachiropterans to Primates.


This work was published before the author joined Aga Khan University.

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