Latest Neuroscience News

5 Reaons why Glial Cells Were So Critical to Human Intelligence.

#1 – Human Glial Cells Make Rats 4 Times Smarter.

It is really surprising to note that despite glial cells making up to 90% of a human brain, neuroscientists in the 1850s actually choose to ignore them and set the pace for research of our neurons instead. glial cells have since then being considered as a glue that hold the brain cells together. But in past 2 decades, neuroscientists have began to take interest in glial cells and attempted many experiments with them.

One of the key experiment is to inject rat with human glial stem cells. They found that these glial stem cells actually proliferate and took over rats original glial cells. As the mice grew, neuroscientist have discovered that rats with human glial cells become 4 times smarter than their peers.



This new research have shed new light on the new roles of glial cell on human intelligent as they have proved themselves capable of improving cognitive capabilities in rats.

#2 – We have the largest ratio of glial cells to neuron in the entire animal kingdom.

For every neuron, there is an 9 glial cells surrounding it. Furthermore, neuroscientist have discovered that the ratio of glial cells to neurons increase as you move up the evolutionary trees. In basic organism like worms, they had less than one glial cells per neurons. For monkeys, the number of glial cells and neuron are 1:1, whales is 7.7:1 but for human, it is at 9:1. We have the largest highest number of glial cells per neurons .


Furthermore a specific type of glial cells known as astrocytes are found in exceptional high concentrations in our brain cortex, a part of the brain responsible for higher thoughts.

#3 – Glial Cells Can Communicate Among Themselves.

Contrary to popular beliefs that glial cells are merely glue to keep our brain together, glial cells have been shown to be capable of communicating among themselves. This lead to neuroscientist to speculate that glial cells could in fact contribute to thoughts. The glial cells do so by calcium waves.

Calcium waves can spread from point of stimulation to other glial cells in an area hundres times the size of the original glial cells. Since calcium ions can cause neurons to fire, the calcium waves within glial cells could contribute to higher thoughts like imagination and creativity.

#4 – Glial Cells Play A Huge Role In Imagination

Neuroscientist have noted that neurons cannot fire on its own, it requires electrical impulses from other neurons to activate it before it fires off its own electrical impulses. Usually the source of electrical impulses comes from our sensory organs. This left neuroscientist pondered about the roles of neurons in higher level of thoughts like imagination and creativity. How can we be in such deep thoughts when we have shut off all our sensory?


New studies have began to emerge that perhaps our glial cells played a huge roles in creativity. During our deep thoughts, the source of electrical impulses does not come  from our sensory organ, instead comes from our glial cells which is capable of stimulating neuron with their calcium waves

#5 – Albert Einstein with IQ 160 Have Extraordinary Number of Glial Cells

When the famed physicist Albert Einstein passed away in 1955, his brain were removed shortly after death and preserved. Back then, technology were not as advanced and neuroscientist could not decipher the secrets of his brain. But as imaging technology improves, neuroscientist began to observed that Albert Einstein brain were actually lighter and smaller than average but have an extraordinary number of glial cells than others.


And even more surprising is that the concentration of such glial cells were the highest in regions of brain that control spatial awareness and mathematics. This could explain why Albert Einstein become excellent physicist. But more importantly explains the critical roles of glial cells play in human intelligent.

About the author


Neuroscience have seen rapid progress over the past 2 decades thanks to new advances in brain imaging technology. Join me in our pursue to unlock the secrets of our brain. Email me: Ben [at]

1 Comment