Neuroglia in Psychiatric Disorders

Caterina Scuderi, Alexei Verkhratsky, Vladimir Parpura, Baoman Li

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In the twentieth century, neuropsychiatric disorders have been perceived solely from a neurone-centric point of view, which considers neurones as the key cellular elements of pathological processes. This dogma has been challenged thanks to the better comprehension of the brain functioning, which, even if far from being complete, has revealed the complexity of interactions that exist between neurones and neuroglia. Glial cells represent a highly heterogeneous population of cells of neural (astroglia and oligodendroglia) and non-neural (microglia) origin populating the central nervous system. The variety of glia reflects the innumerable functions that glial cells perform to support functions of the nervous system. Aberrant execution of glial functions contributes to the development of neuropsychiatric pathologies. Arguably, all types of glial cells are implicated in the neuropathology; however, astrocytes have received particular attention in recent years because of their pleiotropic functions that make them decisive in maintaining cerebral homeostasis. This chapter describes the multiple roles of astrocytes in the healthy central nervous system and discusses the diversity of astroglial responses in neuropsychiatric disorders suggesting that targeting astrocytes may represent an effective therapeutic strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAstrocytes in Psychiatric Disorders
EditorsBaoman Li, Vladimir Parpura, Alexei Verkhratsky, Caterina Scuderi
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherSpringer Cham
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9783030773755
ISBN (Print)9783030773748
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2021

Publication series

NameAdvances in Neurobiology
ISSN (Print)2190-5215
ISSN (Electronic)2190-5223


  • astrocyte
  • astrogliopathy
  • homeostatic functions
  • microglia
  • neuroglia
  • neuropsychiatric disorders
  • NG-2 glia
  • oligodendrocytes


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