Astrocyte-Neuron Metabolic Crosstalk in Neurodegeneration: A Mitochondrial Perspective

Patrycja Mulica, Anne Grünewald*, Sandro L. Pereira

*Corresponding author for this work


Converging evidence made clear that declining brain energetics contribute to aging and are implicated in the initiation and progression of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Indeed, both pathologies involve instances of hypometabolism of glucose and oxygen in the brain causing mitochondrial dysfunction, energetic failure and oxidative stress. Importantly, recent evidence suggests that astrocytes, which play a key role in supporting neuronal function and metabolism, might contribute to the development of neurodegenerative diseases. Therefore, exploring how the neuro-supportive role of astrocytes may be impaired in the context of these disorders has great therapeutic potential. In the following, we will discuss some of the so far identified features underlining the astrocyte-neuron metabolic crosstalk. Thereby, special focus will be given to the role of mitochondria. Furthermore, we will report on recent advancements concerning iPSC-derived models used to unravel the metabolic contribution of astrocytes to neuronal demise. Finally, we discuss how mitochondrial dysfunction in astrocytes could contribute to inflammatory signaling in neurodegenerative diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Article number668517
JournalFrontiers in Endocrinology
Pages (from-to)668517
Publication statusPublished - 07.05.2021


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