Axon

Sunday, April 26, 2009

An axon is a long, slender process which projects from a neuron's body and conducts electrical impulses away from the neuron's cell body to another neuron's dendrite or organ. It is also called nerve fiber. An axon can be more than three feet long and at the end of which it branches to form a tree like structure called teledendria that produce neurotransmitters.

Each axon is covered in a fatty substance called myelin, which nourishes and protects it. The myelin is formed by either of two types of glial cells: Schwann cells wraps around peripheral neurons axons, and oligodendrocytes cells which insulate those of the central nervous system. There are gaps along these myelinated nerve fibers called nodes of Ranvier. Axons usually runs along in groups or bundles called nerves.