Neuroscience letters

Cyclin E marks quiescent neural stem cells and caspase-3-positive newborn cells during adult hippocampal neurogenesis in mice.

PMID 26391744


Cyclin E is a key regulator of progression through the G1-phase of the cell cycle. Recently, a cell cycle-independent role for cyclin E in the adult mouse central nervous system has been suggested. In the present study, we examined expression of cyclin E in the mouse hippocampal dentate gyrus (DG), a region of neurogenesis in adulthood, using immunofluorescence. In the adult DG, cyclin E-immunoreactive (cyclin E+) cells was limited to postmitotic cells. In the subgranular zone, cyclin E was detected in the vertical process of radial glia-like cells, which were marked by the neural stem cell markers nestin and GFAP. Cyclin E was also detected in the nucleus of cells, which were labeled with stage-specific neuronal cell markers, including Pax6, Sox2, NeuroD, doublecortin, and NeuN. The densities of cyclin E+ cells in the DG reduced and increased with age and running, respectively. Furthermore, the majority of cyclin E+ cells co-expressed active caspase-3, a marker of apoptosis. Together, the results indicate that cyclin E is expressed in the process of quiescent neural stem cells and in the nucleus of active caspase-3+ cells during neuronal cell differentiation, suggesting that cyclin E has a Cdk-independent function, which might be important for the mechanisms regulating adult hippocampal neurogenesis.