The neuron comprises of dendrites, soma, axon hillock, axon and terminal buttons.
Neuron Structure and Function
The neuron is a building-block of the Nervous System. It is a data processing component that collects and transmits information. Below is the entire structure of a neuron with their functions:
- Dendrites are projections that enhance the cell body’s surface area; and have synapses. The dendrites collect data or signals from other neurons and convey the messages to the soma of the neuron.
- The soma is actually the body, where messages are conveyed. The soma’s function is to uphold the cell and keep it functioning appropriately. The cell comprises of: mitochondria, i.e. the cell’s energy house or energy producing unit, and Golgi apparatus, that releases products synthesized by the cell.
- At the end of the soma is situated the axon hillock. It governs and oversees the ‘firing’ of the neuron. When the intensity of the signal surpasses the maximum limit of the axon hillock, it dispatches a message to the axon.
- The axon extends from the soma to the terminal buttons and conveys signals and messages. Occasionally, an axon may be covered in a myelin sheath. A myelinated axon communicates data and messages faster than non-myelinated neurons.
- At the end of the neuron are present the terminal buttons. They send messages to the other neurons. A synapse is located at the end of the terminal button and neuro-transmitters transmit signals across the synaptic junctions to other neurons.