Subependymal zone

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The subependymal zone is a cell layer below the ependyma in the lateral ventricles of the brain. This region contains adult neural stem cells which have the potential to generate new neurons and glial cells via neurogenesis. It is an adult version of the embryonic forebrain germinal zone.

Ilias Kazanis at the University of Cambridge compares the subependymal zone to a beating heart which "continuously sends new cells to different areas of the brain: neurons to the olfactory bulbs and glial cells to the cortex and the corpus callosum." [1]

The subependymal zone is a region that may be affected by subependymal giant cell astrocytomas in people with tuberous sclerosis.[2]


  1. ^ Kazanis, Ilias (2009). "The subependymal zone neurogenic niche: a beating heart in the centre of the brain". Brain. 132 (11): 2909–2921. doi:10.1093/brain/awp237. 
  2. ^ Page 424 in: Neil Vasan; Le, Tao; Bhushan, Vikas (2010). First Aid for the USMLE Step 1, 2010 (First Aid USMLE). McGraw-Hill Medical. ISBN 0-07-163340-5.