SPARC (secreted protein acidic and rich in cysteine) is a matricellular protein highly expressed during development, reorganization and tissue repair. In the central nervous system, glial cells express SPARC during development and in neurogenic regions of the adult brain. Astrocytes control the glutamate receptor levels in the developing hippocampus through SPARC secretion. To further characterize the role of SPARC in the brain, we analyzed the hippocampal-dependent adult behavior of SPARC KO mice. We found that SPARC KO mice show increased levels of anxiety-related behaviors and reduced levels of depression-related behaviors. The antidepressant-like phenotype could be rescued by adenoviral vector-mediated expression of SPARC in the adult hippocampus, but anxiety-related behavior persisted in these mice. To identify the cellular mechanisms underlying these behavioral alterations, we analyzed neuronal activity and neurogenesis in the dentate gyrus (DG). SPARC KO mice have increased levels of neuronal activity, evidenced as more neurons that express c-Fos after a footshock. SPARC also affects cell proliferation in the subgranular zone of the DG, although it does not affect maturation and survival of new neurons. SPARC expression in the adult DG does not revert the proliferation phenotype in KO mice, but our results suggest a role of SPARC in limiting the survival of new neurons in the DG. This work suggests that SPARC could affect anxiety-related behavior by modulating neuronal activity, and that depression-related behavior is dependent upon the adult expression of SPARC, which affects adult brain function by mechanisms that need to be elucidated.