Neurogenesis: A process ontogenically linked to brain cavities and their content, CSF

A. Gato, M.i. Alonso, F. Lamus, J. Miyan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Neurogenesis is the process underlying the development of the highly evolved central nervous system (CNS) in vertebrates. Neurogenesis takes place by differentiation of specific Neural Precursor Cells in the neurogenic niche. The main objective of this review is to highlight the specific relationship between the brain cavities, and neurogenesis from neural precursors. Brain cavities and their content, Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF), establish a key relation with the neurogenic “niche” because of the presence in this fluid of neurogenic signals able to control neural precursor cell behaviour, inducing precursor proliferation and neuronal differentiation. This influence seems to be ontogenically preserved, despite the temporal and spatial variations that occur throughout life. In order to better understand this concept, we consider three main life periods in the CSF-Neurogenesis interaction: The “Embryonic” period, which take place at the Neural Tube stage and extends from the isolation of the neural tube at the end of “neurulation” to the beginning of Choroid Plexus activity; the “Fetal” period, which includes the remaining developmental and the early postnatal stages; and the “Adult” period, which continues for the rest of adult life.

Each period has specific characteristics in respect of CSF synthesis and composition, and the location, extension and neurogenic activity of the neurogenic niche. However, CSF interaction with the neurogenic niche is a common factor, which should be taken into account to better understand the ontogeny of neuron formation and replacement, as well as its potential role in the success or failure of therapies for the ageing, injured or diseased brain.
Original languageEnglish
JournalSeminars in cell & developmental biology
Early online date27 Nov 2019
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • cerebrospinal fluid
  • neural precursor
  • neurogenesis
  • Ontogeny
  • brain cavity


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