Chapter 6 - Nerve Tissue
The nervous system is specialized for communication of information from one region of the body to another.
The neuron is the structural and functional unit of the nervous system. However, non-neural cells (i.e., glial cells) provide support and protection in the CNS (oligodendrocytes, astrocytes, ependymal cells and microglia) and the PNS (Schwann cells and satellite cells).
Peripheral nerves contain the axons of both motor neurons and sensory neurons that connect with the spinal cord. They are surrounded by multiple layers of connective tissue.
Myelinated axons are a portion of a neuron that is encapsulated by a fatty layer called the myelin sheath. The speed of conduction of myelinated axons is faster than unmyelinated axons.
A synapse is a junction between two neurons in which impulses pass by diffusion of a neurotransmitter.
A neuromuscular junction (or motor endplate) is a specialized synapse between a motor neuron and a skeletal muscle cell. It transmits a signal to the muscle fiber causing its contraction.