Researchers develop increasingly complex mini-brains

Scientists of the D'Or Institute for Research and Education have improved the initial steps of a standard protocol and produced organoids displaying regionalized brain structures, including retinal pigmented cells. Their ...

Opening the black box of dendritic computing

How do nerve cells compute? This fundamental question drives LMU neurobiologists led by Andreas Herz. They have now presented a novel method to disentangle complex neural processes in a much more powerful way than was previously ...

Genes on the move help nose make sense of scents

The human nose can distinguish one trillion different scents—an extraordinary feat that requires 10 million specialized nerve cells, or neurons, in the nose, and a family of more than 400 dedicated genes. But precisely ...

Should researchers engineer a spicy tomato?

The chili pepper, from an evolutionary perspective, is the tomato's long-lost spitfire cousin. They split off from a common ancestor 19 million years ago but still share some of the same DNA. While the tomato plant went on ...

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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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