Norepinephrine from the Locus Coeruleus Regulates Microglia Dynamics During Wakefulness
Microglia, the brain’s “busy bees”, continuously survey the microenvironment by extending and retracting their ramified processes to maintain brain homeostasis [1, 2]. Upon disease or injury, microglia quickly transform their morphology and extend their processes towards the disease/injury sites to clear damage . The mechanisms underlying the high motility of microglial processes and the rapid morphological transformation of microglia have been extensively investigated. However, studies on microglial dynamics in vivo have predominantly been carried out in anesthetized animals, and how microglia behave under awake conditions remained unknown. Using two-photon microscopy to track microglia dynamics in awake mice, two independent studies published recently [3, 4] have demonstrated that during wakefulness, microglia exhibit shorter arborization, reduced motility, and diminished responsiveness to injury compared to those under anesthesia. Moreover, both studies showed that...
This work was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31671057) and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (2019FZA7009).