. Wild-type nonneuronal cells extend survival of SOD1 mutant motor neurons in ALS mice. Science. 2003 Oct 3;302(5642):113-7. PubMed.


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  1. The Science article by Clement (Don Cleveland, University of California) and other US and Canadian researchers is a masterpiece in demonstrating the prominent influence of non-neuronal cells on the ALS pathogenesis, which can be extrapolated to other neurodegenerative diseases. I take this opportunity to add a piece of evidence we observed indicating phenotypic changes within astrocytes located in the vicinity of the axons belonging to damaged (and dying) motoneurons from both SOD1 transgenic mice model and human sporadic ALS (see ref. below).


    . S100A6 overexpression within astrocytes associated with impaired axons from both ALS mouse model and human patients. J Neuropathol Exp Neurol. 2002 Aug;61(8):736-44. PubMed.

    View all comments by Roland Pochet
  2. Astrocytes in brain as a form of extracellular matrix. As evolution proceeded, animals developed more astrocytes relative to neurons. Annelids have equal numbers, monkeys already have more astrocytes than neurons, humans 3 times more.

    We need more investigations of astrocytes in brain diseases.
    I predict that astrocytes will be the cells of 21 century.

    View all comments by Soraya Valles

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