Glial Regulation of the Neuronal Connectome through Local and Long-Distant Communication

Neuron. 2015 Apr 22;86(2):374-86. doi: 10.1016/j.neuron.2015.01.014.


If "the connectome" represents a complete map of anatomical and functional connectivity in the brain, it should also include glia. Glia define and regulate both the brain's anatomical and functional connectivity over a broad range of length scales, spanning the whole brain to subcellular domains of synaptic interactions. This Perspective article examines glial interactions with the neuronal connectome (including long-range networks, local circuits, and individual synaptic connections) and highlights opportunities for future research. Our understanding of the structure and function of the neuronal connectome would be incomplete without an understanding of how all types of glia contribute to neuronal connectivity and function, from single synapses to circuits.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Astrocytes / physiology
  • Connectome*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Nerve Fibers, Myelinated / physiology
  • Nerve Net / physiology*
  • Neural Conduction / physiology
  • Neuroglia / physiology*
  • Optic Nerve / cytology
  • Optic Nerve / physiology
  • Optic Nerve / ultrastructure
  • Synapses / physiology
  • Synaptic Transmission / physiology*