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Astrocytes in vitro

An Ocean Filled with Stars

Researchers at the Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School in Singapore captured this image of astrocytes (star-shaped glial cells of the brain) that were developed from neural stem cells of mice in a lab dish. The nuclei of the cells are stained pink and the green dye is specific to a protein that marks them as astrocytes. Astrocytes are helpers and supporters of the brain's neurons and they perform repairs after a brain injury. Assistant Professor Eyleen Goh's lab at Duke-NUS is learning how human and mouse stem cells can become astrocytes on command with an eye toward possible therapies for many kinds of brain disorders in adults. (image: Guillaume Marcy)