Psych M.D. - Synapse


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Term: Synapse
Definition (Myers): The juntion between the axon tip of the sending neuron and the dendrite or cell body of the receiving neuron. The tiny gap at this junction is called the synaptic gap or cleft. 1
Definition (alternative): A neural junction used for communication between neurons. It usually refers to a chemical synapse, but also could be an electrical synapse or immunological synapse. 2
Contextual explanation: As we know that the neuron is made up and travels through and with the dendrite (receives information), cell body or soma, axon hillock (beginning of axon), axon (message travels through here), myelin sheath (makes the message travel faster), axon potential (electircal charge that triggers information by threshold), threshold (excitatory - inhibitory > or = threshold), axon terminal (end of axon), synaptic vesicles (contains neurotransmitters), neurotransmitters (chemical messengers), the synapse is located in between the end of the neuron and the dendrites of other neuron. The goo (nts) hang around here and goes to the next dendrite or comes back to the vesicles (reuptake).
Related terms and concepts:
  • Dendrite
  • Cell Body
  • Nucleus or Soma
  • Axon Hillock
  • Axon
  • Myelin Sheath
  • Axon Potential
  • Threshold
  • Axon Terminal
  • Synaptic Vesicles
  • Neurotransmitters
  • Neuron
  • Reuptake
  • Excitatory
  • Inhibitory
3 (left), 4 (right)
Related websites:
Sources:
  1. Myers, D. G. (2004). Psychology. New York, New York: Worth Publishers.
  2. Synapse (disambiguation). Retrieved Septermber 7, 2009, from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synapse_(disambiguation).
  3. Jokerwe, (2007, October 2). Neural Synapse. Retrieved September 24, 2009, from Youtube Web site: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXx9qlJetSU
  4. geneedinc, (2008, August 25). Synaptic Transmission. Retrieved September 24, 2009, from Youtube Web site: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9vZI_XKca88
Edited by: Won Seok
Date of last edit: September 24th, 2009

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