Luca Bonfanti

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Polysialic acid (PSA) is a linear homopolymer of alpha2-8-N acetylneuraminic acid whose major carrier in vertebrates is the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM). PSA serves as a potent negative regulator of cell interactions via its unusual biophysical properties. PSA on NCAM is developmentally regulated thus playing a prominent role in different forms of(More)
The lateral walls of the forebrain lateral ventricles are the richest source of stem cells in the adult mammalian brain. These stem cells give rise to new olfactory neurons that are renewed throughout life. The neurons originate in the subventricular zone (SVZ), migrate within the rostral extension (RE) of the SVZ along the rostral migratory stream (RMS)(More)
In the central nervous system cell migration is usually restricted to developmental periods and occurs mainly radially, following the radial glia. Nevertheless, in the subependymal layer of the adult rodent forebrain tangential migration of newly generated neuronal precursors directed to the olfactory bulb, which follow a well-defined pathway without(More)
The subventricular zone (SVZ) is regarded as an embryonic germinal layer persisting at the end of cerebral cortex neurogenesis and capable of generating neuronal precursors throughout life. The two distinct compartments of the adult rodent forebrain SVZ, astrocytic glial tubes and chains of migrating cells, are not distinguishable in the embryonic and early(More)
The highly sialylated isoform of the neural cell adhesion molecule is thought to be expressed predominantly in the developing nervous system, where it is implicated in a variety of dynamic events linked to neural morphogenesis. It has become increasingly evident, however, that this "embryonic" neural cell adhesion molecule isoform continues to be expressed(More)
In adult rodents, doublecortin (DCX) and polysialylated neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM) expression is mostly restricted to newly generated neurons. These molecules have also been described in prenatally generated cells of the piriform cortex and, to a lesser extent, neocortex (NC) of the rat. In addition, PSA-NCAM+ cells have been identified in(More)
In the brains of adult mammals long-distance cell migration of neuronal precursors is known to occur in the rostral migratory stream, involving chains of cells sliding into astrocytic glial tubes. By combining immunocytochemistry for polysialylated neural cell adhesion molecule (PSA-NCAM), neuronal and glial antigens, endogenous and exogenously administered(More)
Investigations of adult neurogenesis in recent years have revealed numerous differences among mammalian species, reflecting the remarkable diversity in brain anatomy and function of mammals. As a mechanism of brain plasticity, adult neurogenesis might also differ due to behavioural specialization or adaptation to specific ecological niches. Because most(More)
Regenerative processes occurring under physiological (maintenance) and pathological (reparative) conditions are a fundamental part of life and vary greatly among different species, individuals, and tissues. Physiological regeneration occurs naturally as a consequence of normal cell erosion, or as an inevitable outcome of any biological process aiming at the(More)
The persistence of neurogenesis and structural plasticity was believed until recently to be restricted to lower vertebrates and songbirds. Nevertheless, it has now been ascertained that these phenomena can occur in the adult mammalian nervous system, at least in three distinct sites: the olfactory neuroepithelium of the nasal mucosa and two brain regions,(More)