Medical research

Researchers regrow damaged nerves with polymer and protein

University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine researchers have created a biodegradable nerve guide—a polymer tube—filled with growth-promoting protein that can regenerate long sections of damaged nerves, without the need ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Finding the genes that turn on Japanese encephalitis

Investigators have identified the specific genes that become overactive as a result of nerve cell infection with Japanese encephalitis virus. The genes activate cell receptors and signaling proteins that attract immune cells ...

Medical research

AQAMAN takes aim at rare neurodegenerative diseases

A synthetic small molecule compound called AQAMAN can prevent and even reverse harmful protein build-up in neurons that is associated with several rare neurodegenerative disorders, including polyglutamine (or polyQ) diseases.

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Why do people develop chronic pain?

Mood disorders and the discovery of a pain signalling organ in the skin could explain why chronic pain occurs—and how to treat it.

Neuroscience

Radiation breaks connections in the brain

One of the potentially life-altering side effects that patients experience after cranial radiotherapy for brain cancer is cognitive impairment. Researchers now believe that they have pinpointed why this occurs and these findings ...

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Neuron

A neuron (pronounced /ˈnjʊərɒn/ N(Y)OOR-on, also known as a neurone or nerve cell) is an excitable cell in the nervous system that processes and transmits information by electrochemical signalling. Neurons are the core components of the brain, the vertebrate spinal cord, the invertebrate ventral nerve cord, and the peripheral nerves. A number of specialized types of neurons exist: sensory neurons respond to touch, sound, light and numerous other stimuli affecting cells of the sensory organs that then send signals to the spinal cord and brain. Motor neurons receive signals from the brain and spinal cord and cause muscle contractions and affect glands. Interneurons connect neurons to other neurons within the same region of the brain or spinal cord. Neurons respond to stimuli, and communicate the presence of stimuli to the central nervous system, which processes that information and sends responses to other parts of the body for action. Neurons do not go through mitosis, and usually cannot be replaced after being destroyed, although astrocytes have been observed to turn into neurons as they are sometimes pluripotent.

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