6. Hey neuron, it’s me, glia

Draped in astrocytes, neurons witness the calcium waves flowing throughout the cortex. However, they are not innocent bystanders. As the calcium wave breaks and spreads to other astrocytes, it is returned and sequestered back to the internal stores in the cell. But we are not in A Clockwork Orange—sitting in chairs with our eyelids peeled open as subjects of experimental aversion therapy. We act on what we experience. Astrocytes process the information coming from our sensory neurons, and in some cases, after communicating with each other, astrocytes might decide to act on our motor neurons, unless we are embroiled in a DVD marathon of course.

Astrocytes are the root of our cognitive function, and therefore, are ...

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