Nerve fibre node, TEM

Nerve fibre node, TEM

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Credit: THOMAS DEERINCK, NCMIR/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Nerve fibre node. Coloured transmission electron micrograph (TEM) of a cross-section through a nerve fibre (axon) at a node of Ranvier. The axon (brown) is surrounded by a fatty insulating sheath of myelin (purple), which increases the speed of the nerve signal. Nodes of Ranvier are areas of exposed axon, with a high concentration of sodium channels. Instead of travelling continuously along the length of the axon, the impulse jumps between these nodes in a process called saltatory conduction. This allows the impulse to travel over long distances.

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