Stress hormone kicks brain cells into gear

Norepinephrine wakes up cells called astroglia

By Laura Sanders, 15:47 PM June 17, 2014

Some brain cells need a jolt of stress to snap to attention. Cells called astroglia help regulate blood flow, provide energy to nearby cells and even influence messages’ movement between nerve cells. Now, scientists report June 18 in Neuron that astroglia can be roused by the stress molecule norepinephrine, an awakening that may help the entire brain jump into action.

As mice were forced to walk on a treadmill, an activity that makes them alert, astroglia in several parts of their brains under...

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