What is neuron?

What Does neuron Mean

The first thing we are going to do is know the etymological origin of the term neuron that we are now dealing with. In this case, it must be emphasized that it comes from the Greek, exactly from the word “neuron”, which can be translated as “nerve”.

Likewise, we have to point out that this word is a neologism that was coined by the German-born analyst and pathologist Heinrich Wilhelm Gottfried Waldeyer-Hartz (1836 - 1921). Specifically, it is considered that he gave shape to that term in his work entitled "The theory of the neuron" (1891).
A neuron is a nerve cell that, through electrical and chemical signals, receives, processes and sends information . Neurons pick up the stimuli and conduct the nerve impulse through connections called synapses .
The body of the neuron can take various forms. In it, it is possible to detect different extensions, the axon being the longest . Precisely the axon, also known as neurite , is responsible for the transmission of nerve impulses to other nerve, muscle or other cells.

Thanks to synapses , neurons allow the interconnection of the various components of the nervous system . Thus, when a sensory area of ​​the body registers a stimulus, the information in question is conducted by neurons to the component in charge of offering a response. This new signal, in turn, is also transferred by the neurons for the execution of some action (a secretion of a gland, a contraction of a muscle, a movement, etc.).
The neurons that convert external stimuli into internal ones are called sensory neurons or sensory neurons . Its activation occurs when the ear, touch or other sense picks up the stimulus. The information is then sent by these neurons to the spinal cord or brain .
The efferent neurons or effector neurons , meanwhile, are dedicated to the transport of nerve impulses to the outside of the central nervous system, taking them to the glands or muscles .
If we take into account its function and its form, we can establish that it also refers to the existence of other types of neurons:

-Interneurons, which are those neurons that directly connect with others. This is what gives rise to the creation of a broad neurological network, which, in turn, shapes really important processes such as, for example, thought.

-Unipolar neurons, which have a single prolongation and are found mainly in invertebrates.

-Bipolar neurons, which have two opposite axons.

-Multipolar neurons, which are very abundant and can be of two classes or groups: the Golgi I, in which the pyramidal and Purkinje are found, and the Golgi II.

-Pseudounipolar neurons, which are related to pain and touch. Of these, it should be noted that they seem to have a single axon, although they have two ends.

It is estimated that the adult human being has an average of 86,000 million neurons . These cells are organized into neural networks and also create neural circuits from their synaptic connections.

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