Adult neurogenesis is influenced by blood-borne factors. In this context, greater or lesser vascular permeability along neurogenic niches would expose differentially neural stem cells (NSCs), transit amplifying cells (TACs), and neuroblasts to such factors. Here we evaluate endothelial cell morphology and vascular permeability along the forebrain neurogenic niche in the adult brain. Our results confirm that the subventricular zone (SVZ) contains highly permeable, discontinuous blood vessels, some of which allow the extravasation of molecules larger than those previously reported. In contrast, the rostral migratory stream (RMS) and the olfactory bulb core (OBc) display mostly impermeable, continuous blood vessels. These results imply that NSCs, TACs, and neuroblasts located within the SVZ are exposed more readily to blood-borne molecules, including those with very high molecular weights, than those positioned along the RMS and the OBc, subregions in which every stage of neurogenesis also takes place. These observations suggest that the existence of specialized vascular niches is not a precondition for neurogenesis to occur; specialized vascular beds might be essential for keeping high rates of proliferation and/or differential differentiation of neural precursors located at distinct domains. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Blood vessels in the subventricular zone are discontinuous and permeable, whereas those placed along the rostral migratory stream and within the olfactory bulb core are continuous and impermeable. Hence, both specialized and seemingly less specialized vascular beds support neurogenesis.