New Component of Brain Cells Discovered


Senior Member

"Scientists have discovered a new kind of synapse in the tiny hairs on the surface of neurons. The commonly overlooked protrusions called primary cilia contain special junctions that act as a shortcut for sending signals quickly and directly to the cell's nucleus, inducing changes to the cell's chromatin that forms chromosomes."

"Scientists had largely ignored these cilia because they were difficult to see with traditional imaging techniques. But recently, better imaging tools have sparked an interest in these tiny appendages."

Yet another discovery of an important body part that's been ignored/unknown until now. I think this is the third I've posted about in the last couple of years. What else is still hiding in our bodies, as potential targets of treatments?

In terms of ME, can anyone say that the root dysfunction of ME isn't in these cilia? Could the ratio of a specific amino acid and a specific fatty acid in the brain fluid cause subtle changes in the cilia functions, which in turn affect the neuron's functions, which in turn affects the rest of the body? We don't know, since no one's bothered to check them, and studies of blood or muscles won't reveal the answer if it's these hard-to-study cilia.

We need a Star-trek medical tricorder: it checks everything. :)


The good news is patients don't die the bad news..
Its possible that ME/CFS is caused by some unknown structure or molecule.
Narcolepsy was considered psychosomatic (big surprise) until the discovery of Orexin in 1998. Before that there was no useful theory beyond the psychosomatic claptrap.
It may be similar for us.

Interesting. We absolutely need the advanced medical care aboard the USS Enterprise.
Indeed we do


Senior Member
Given that half the metabolites that change in ME/CFS are unidentified and unknown cause there is a really good chance the condition is in something we don't know and have assumed doesn't matter as its hiding in a sea of other problems which look like bigger effects. Some part of ME/CFS research (if only it had the funding) ought to be chasing down all these metabolites and working out what they do, there is got to be value in just understanding everything in the blood and urine and getting a complete picture of all the things we can measure noninvasively without having a disease to necessary pin them too, could be amazing breakthroughs on almost anything in them.