Dysfunctional astrocytes found in bipolar disorder: study

The finding fits with a higher risk of inflammatory diseases in patients, authors say

The inflammatory cytokine interleukin (IL)-6 may contribute to astrocyte malfunction in bipolar disorder, researchers say.

2 astrocytes surrounding a neurone

The US team had previously published a method for rapidly generating inflammation-responsive astrocytes from human-induced pluripotent stem cells via a glial precursor intermediate.

Using this protocol they studied inflammation-related phenotypes of stem cell-derived astrocytes generated from patients with bipolar disorder and from healthy controls.