Including immune cells in brain organoids improves model's accuracy

Peter Hess
2021 Spectrum  
Adding non-neuronal brain cells called microglia to cortical organoids speeds up the rate at which their neurons mature, increases the synchronization of their firing and appears to reduce cell stress, according to a new study. These changes, as well as others, help the clusters of cultured cells reflect more faithfully how the human brain develops and functions, says the team behind the work. Researchers presented the findings virtually at the 2021 Society for Neuroscience annual meeting.
more » ... organoids, grown from stem cells, do not always include cells other than neurons -such as astrocytes and microglia. And in fact, the gene expression patterns of the cells in organoids do not capture those seen in human microglia, previous work shows. "Microglia, or any immune cell population, they represent one of the major cell types that are normally absent from the organoids," says Galina Popova, a postdoctoral scholar in the lab of
doi:10.53053/lmrz5964 fatcat:mpsuvru63re6rbzcatu43242ku