In vivo reprogramming of resident glial cells for regeneration.

Irreversible neuron loss is a major cause of the devastating effects that lead to morbidity and mortality after trauma, stroke, or neurodegenerative conditions. The region-restricted localization of endogenous neurogenic NSCs render them inadequate for repair of the damaged network. In contrast to neuron loss, resident glial cells, which are very abundant and ubiquitously distributed in the nervous system, become reactive and proliferate surrounding the damaged regions. Reprogramming some of these glial cells into local neurons may promote regeneration by creating a beneficial environment and forming new circuits between induced and surviving neurons. Our studies revealed that resident glial cells can be sequentially reprogramed into neural progenitors, neuroblasts, and mature neurons in the adult brain and spinal cord after injury.