How algae may one day cure parkinson’s disease |

Ever see a green film form on a still pond? It happens because alga needs sunlight to complete the photosynthesis cycle, the process it uses to convert carbon dioxide and water into the sugar it “eats.” It’s that drive to seek the light that makes Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, a single-celled alga, a brain research superstar and the core of optogenetics technology–which uses light-sensitive proteins to study how neurons employ electrochemical signals to produce memories, thoughts, and behaviors. It is helping scientists research brain diseases and disorders such as Parkinson’s, schizophrenia, depression, stroke, PTSD, addiction, some forms of blindness, and more:
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