Noradrenaline Drives Structural Changes in Astrocytes and Brain Extracllular Space

Ang D. Sherpa, Chiye Aoki, Sabina Hrabetova

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Locus coeruleus neurons innervate multiple brain regions. These neurons release noradrenaline through their axonal varicosities into the extracllular spac through synaptic and volume transmission during states of arousal. The extracllular spac is a channel that surrounds brain clls, facilitating diffusion-mediated transport of signaling molecules, ions, and drugs. Distal astrocytic procsses expressing β-adrenergic receptors are targets of noradrenaline. In this review, we discuss work in cortical tissue indicating that β-adrenergic agonist, isoproterenol, expands astrocytic procsses. Isoproterenol-driven increase in volume of astrocytic procsses contributes partially to decrease in the extracllular spac volume from 22% to 18%. Decrease in the extracllular spac volume suggests increased concntration of ions, neurotransmitters, and neuromodulators diffusing in the extracllular spac, which, in turn, facilitates neuronal signaling during noradrenaline release in cortex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationNoradrenergic Signaling and Astroglia
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9780128134269
ISBN (Print)9780128050880
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Astrocytes
  • Diffusion
  • Electron microscopy
  • Extracllular spac
  • Noradrenergic system
  • Real-time iontophoretic (RTI) method
  • Sleep-wake cycle
  • Tortuosity
  • Volume fraction
  • Volume transmission

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience


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