Present address: Department of Biological Repair, Institute for Frontier Medical Sciences, and Center for iPS Cell Research and Application (CiRA), Kyoto University, 53 Kawahara-machi, Shogoin, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-8507, Japan.
Regeneration in an evolutionarily primitive brain – the planarian Dugesia japonica model
Article first published online: 19 SEP 2011
© 2011 The Authors. European Journal of Neuroscience © 2011 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and Blackwell Publishing Ltd
European Journal of Neuroscience
Special Issue: Towards a Comparative Understanding of Adult Neurogenesis
Volume 34, Issue 6, pages 863–869, September 2011
How to Cite
Umesono, Y., Tasaki, J., Nishimura, K., Inoue, T. and Agata, K. (2011), Regeneration in an evolutionarily primitive brain – the planarian Dugesia japonica model. European Journal of Neuroscience, 34: 863–869. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-9568.2011.07819.x
- Issue published online: 19 SEP 2011
- Article first published online: 19 SEP 2011
- Received 2 March 2011, revised 3 June 2011, accepted 4 July 2011
- brain regeneration;
- cell cycle;
- c-Jun N-terminal kinase;
A unique aspect of planarians is that they can regenerate a brain from somatic pluripotent stem cells called neoblasts, which have the ability to produce themselves (self-renew) and to give rise to all missing cell types during regeneration. Recent molecular studies have revealed that the planarian brain is composed of many distinct neuronal populations, which are evolutionarily and functionally conserved ones, and acts as an information-processing center to elicit distinct behavioral traits depending on a variety of signals arising from the external environment. How can planarians regenerate such a brain? On the basis of our recent findings, here we review the cellular and molecular mechanisms that regulate the stem cell dynamics involved in the brain regeneration of the planarian Dugesia japonica. Our findings suggest the possible value of in vivo planarian studies for guiding regenerative medicine to treat neurodegenerative diseases via interlinking stem cell biology and regeneration biology.