SEM of nerve synapses in Aplysia

SEM of nerve synapses in Aplysia

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Credit: OMIKRON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Synaptic junctions. False-colour scanning electron micrograph (SEM) showing the junctions (synapses) of motor nerves in the marine snail Aplysia. At centre is a nerve cell body (orange); clustered around are branches of motor neuron axons (blue) with small terminal swellings (called boutons or motor end plates). These swellings attach to the tissue surface & synapse with the cell body. They release neurotransmitter chemicals in response to electrical impulses travelling down the nerves. In this way nerve to nerve communication occurs, and the nerve cell body responds. The large nerves in the snail Aplysia make it ideal for such studies. Magnification: x700 at 35mm size.

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Keywords: anatomy, animal body, axon, bouton, end plate, motor end plates, nerve synapse, nerve tissue, nerves on nerve, neurone, on nerve, synapse, synapse on nerve, synapses on nerve, synaptic junction

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