Star-shaped glial cells
, sensibly named astrocytes, are found throughout the central nervous system. They provide neurons with nutrients, clean up dead cells, and perform other important functions.
Astrocytes communicate using ATP, a molecule used in energy metabolism. The researchers who created this image used luminescence to study how mouse astrocytes communicate. Each time the cells sent a message, they would glow, making them all the more star-like. The scientists found the body’s internal clock drove the release of ATP.