Light micrograph of a pyramidal neuron

Light micrograph of a pyramidal neuron

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Credit: DOUGLAS & MARTIN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Light micrograph of a pyramidal neuron (nerve cell) from mammalian visual cortex. At centre is a cell body (20 microns wide); branched dendrites with spines receive input stimuli from neighbour- ing neurons; a single axon (fine central fibre, partly disappearing & leading downwards) transmits the cell's response. On stimulation, a sudden local change in nerve cell-membrane permeability occurs. Sodium and potassium ions diffuse through, causing an electrical potential that travels wave- like along the nerve. Impulses are thus created. Nerve cells are able to adapt to incoming stimuli and may even alter their response.

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Keywords: anatomy, axon, cell body, cells, dendrite, human body, images, magnified image, mammal neuron, micrograph, microscopic photos, nerve cell, nervous, neurone, pyramidal, pyramidal neuron, subjects, system, visual cortex

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