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.
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