July 7, 2022 - 9:30 am
July 7, 2022 - 5:45 pm
AddressHôpital Pitié 47 Bd de l'Hôpital 75013 Paris View map
In the Central Nervous System, astrocytes represent bridging elements between parenchymal and vascular compartments, thereby forming a functional unit (neurovascular, NVU) that might “sense” the brain state, adapt its molecular profile and secrete factors in the bloodstream as a reflection of this state. Moreover, astrocytes modulate astrocyte-to-neuron communication, thereby enabling nerve cells to acquire and store information through learning processes. The discovery of direct reconversion of glia cells into neurons has additionally provided novel insights into the generation of fully functional mature neurons from other cell types, with the potential to develop alternative therapeutic approaches for neurodegenerative brain disorders.
Thus, astrocyte-specific molecular prints may become useful biomarkers of distinct cellular (dys)functions in health and disease. In a translational perspective, their characterization in pathological conditions may support the development of diagnostic tools or the selection of tailored treatment options for individual patients. Finally, glia cell reprogramming may offer valid, less invasive, cell replacement therapies for human disorders.