The Cell Diagram of a Neuron

Filed under: Cell Diagram - 09 Apr 2012  | Share on:

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The nervous system is one of the most important parts in our bodies and we would not be able to function without it. This is why it is important to learn something about neurons, which are the nerve cells composing the nervous system. Neurons are cells which are adapted to receiving and transmitting information, being at the same time the elementary, embryologic, anatomic, functional, trophic and metabolic cells of the nervous system. Neurons are therefore electrically excitable cells with the purpose of transmitting and processing information via electrical and chemical signaling. As to any cell, the neuron cell diagram is very important for its better understanding.

The neuron cell diagram typically contains the cell body (also known as the soma), dendrites, and an axon. The cell body is the largest and main portion of the cell, the one which contains the nucleus. The nucleus is usually singular, large and centrally positioned. Here is where a large quantity of ARN is being produced and also where the chromatin is being dispersed. Dendrites are the neuron extensions which look like branches and extend from the cell body. This is not shown in the neuron cell diagram, but dendrites are the one which carry nerve impulses from adjacent neurons into the cell body. Only one extension sets itself apart from the others, which is the axon. The axon arises from the cell body at the axon hillock and can be very large in length (up to even 1 meter).

The axon ending is, as the name and the cell diagram suggest, the very end of each axon. It is also known as the axon terminal, the bouton, the axon foot or the synaptic knob and it has the role of converting the electro-chemical signal into a chemical message which travels further to the next neuron. As to any animal cell, the neuron cell is surrounded by a plasma membrane. The last element in the neuron cell diagram is the myelin sheath, which consists of fat-containing cells that have the part of insulating the axon from electrical activity. The cell diagram of the neuron is surely easier to understand now, isn’t it?

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