Although hippocampal neurogenesis in the adult brain has been conserved across the vertebrate lineage, laboratory studies have primarily examined this phenomenon in rodent models. This approach has been successful in elucidating important factors and mechanisms that can modulate rates of hippocampal neurogenesis, including hormones, environmental complexity, learning and memory, motor stimulation, and stress. However, recent studies have found that neurobiological research on neurogenesis in rodents may not easily translate to, or explain, neurogenesis patterns in nonrodent systems, particularly in species examined in the field. This review examines some of the evolutionary and ecological variables that may also modulate neurogenesis patterns. This 'top-down' and more naturalistic approach, which incorporates ecology and natural history, particularly of nonmodel species, may allow for a more comprehensive understanding of the functional significance of neurogenesis.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental Neuroscience
- Behavioral Neuroscience