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Keywords:

  • common marmoset;
  • subventricular zone;
  • rostral migratory stream

Abstract

The adult subventricular zone (SVZ) of the lateral ventricle contains neural stem cells. In rodents, these cells generate neuroblasts that migrate as chains toward the olfactory bulb along the rostral migratory stream (RMS). The neural-stem-cell niche at the ventricular wall is conserved in various animal species, including primates. However, it is unclear how the SVZ and RMS organization in nonhuman primates relates to that of rodents and humans. Here we studied the SVZ and RMS of the adult and neonatal common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus), a New World primate used widely in neuroscience, by electron microscopy, and immunohistochemical detection of cell-type-specific markers. The marmoset SVZ contained cells similar to type B, C, and A cells of the rodent SVZ in their marker expression and morphology. The adult marmoset SVZ had a three-layer organization, as in the human brain, with ependymal, hypocellular, and astrocyte-ribbon layers. However, the hypocellular layer was very thin or absent in the adult-anterior and neonatal SVZ. Anti-PSA-NCAM staining of the anterior SVZ in whole-mount ventricular wall preparations of adult marmosets revealed an extensive network of elongated cell aggregates similar to the neuroblast chains in rodents. Time-lapse recordings of marmoset SVZ explants cultured in Matrigel showed the neuroblasts migrating in chains, like rodent type A cells. These results suggest that some features of neurogenesis and neuronal migration in the SVZ are common to marmosets, humans, and rodents. This basic description of the adult and neonatal marmoset SVZ will be useful for future studies on adult neurogenesis in primates. J. Comp. Neurol. 519:690–713, 2011. © 2010 Wiley-Liss, Inc.