Previous studies have shown the existence of proliferating cells in explants from bovine (Bos Taurus) lateral ventricle walls that were maintained for several days in vitro in the absence of serum and growth factors. In this study we have characterized the nature of new cells and have assessed whether the insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) receptor regulates their survival and/or proliferation. The explants were composed of the ependymal layer and attached subependymal cells. Ependymal cells in culture were labelled with glial markers (S-100, vimentin, GFAP, BLBP, 3A7 and 3CB2) and did not incorporate bromodeoxiuridine when this molecule was added to the culture media. Most subependymal cells were immunoreactive for βIII-tubulin, a neuronal marker, and did incorporate bromodeoxiuridine. Subependymal neurons displayed immunoreactivity for IGF-1 and its receptor and expressed IGF-1 mRNA, indicating that IGF-1 is produced in the explants and may act on new neurons. Addition to the culture media of an IGF-1 receptor antagonist, the peptide JB1, did not affect the incorporation of bromodeoxiuridine to proliferating subependymal cells. However, JB1 significantly increased the number of TUNEL positive cells in the subependymal zone, suggesting that IGF-1 receptor is involved in the survival of subependymal neurons. In conclusion, these findings indicate that neurogenesis is maintained in explants from the lateral cerebral ventricle of adult bovine brains and that IGF-1 is locally produced in the explants and may regulate the survival of the proliferating neurons.