News & Features
Our circadian clock is the invisible hand that brings order to our days, setting the schedule for when we feel alert, sleepy, even hungry. Johns Hopkins experts are making some notable discoveries about how our circadian rhythms work.
Johns Hopkins researchers have discovered that the loss of a particular gene alters the structure of brain cells and how they connect to one another—a finding that adds to the understanding of schizophrenia and shows how other mental illnesses might also be investigated.
Studying astrocytes in live mice, researchers found that the fight-or-flight chemical norepinephrine primes the cells to monitor and respond to nearby neurons—suggesting that astrocytes may help control the brain's ability to focus.