Schwann Cells and Unmyelinated Axons
Neuron Support Cells – Overview
Neurons cannot function properly without the assistance of several types of support cells.
- The support cells, which are also referred to as glial cells or neuroglia (nerve glue), help out in many ways:
- They regulate the chemical environment around the neurons.
- They protect neurons from foreign invaders.
- They help neurons conduct impulses
- They stabilize the position of neurons
- They help repair (regenerate) damaged neurons
- Shown below are the four types of support cells found in the central nervous system.
- Even though most people have never heard of these oddly named cells, they are much more numerous (50:1) than the neurons they support. Unlike neurons, support cells do not lose their ability to divide. Thus, they are the source of brain tumors in adults.
Master nervous system anatomy with these interactive quizzes, videos, diagrams and labeling exercises.