Our recent work on microglia has identified a potassium channel that regulates cell ramification and surveillance of the brain (Madry et al., 2017).
Future work will investigate how modulation of this channel affects synapse pruning, animal behaviour and the response to pathology.
Microglial cell in a brain slice constantly extending and retracting its processes to survey the environment. This surveillance is thought to be important for detecting invading organisms, assessing the function of and pruning synapses, and regulating the activity of neurons. Scale bar 20 microns; movie duration 30 mins.