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The origins of astrocytes: the brain’s star cell

27 July 2022
A new SISSA study investigates the unexplored dynamics behind the production of these special cells

Astrocytes are a particular subgroup of star-shaped brain cells. Although less well-known than neurons, astrocytes are essential for neuronal activity and play a role in various neurological diseases. A new study led by Antonello Mallamaci from the Trieste-based International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA), recently published in Cerebral Cortex, demonstrates that as an embryo develops, these cells are produced according to different programs in different parts of the brain. This discovery has revealed new mechanisms for regulating stem cells in the brain and may have implications for therapeutic treatments. 


Image by Manuela Santo