Latest Axon terminal Stories

2012-05-31 01:40:25

A molecule responsible for the proper formation and function of neurons finds its way to the right place not because it is actively recruited, but because it can't go anywhere else. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine have identified a distal axonal cytoskeleton that functions as a boundary to ensure a key scaffolding protein, called ankyrinG, stays at the start of the axon near the cell body where it performs its functions of clustering sodium and potassium ion channels and...

2011-08-23 21:24:40

A fundamental new discovery about how nerve cells in the brain store and release tiny sacs filled with chemicals may radically alter the way scientists think about neurotransmission — the electrical signaling in the brain that enables everything from the way we move, to how we remember and sense the world. According to the scientists at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) who conducted the research, the discovery doesn´t change the players involved so much as it...

2010-11-10 17:27:38

Reclaimed proteins enable the fusion of transmitter vesicles with the cell membrane Neurons communicate via chemical transmitters which they store in the bubble-like synaptic vesicles and release as required. To be able to react reliably to stimulation, neurons must have a certain number of "acutely releasable" vesicles. With the help of a new method, neuroscientists at the Max Planck Institute of Experimental Medicine in Göttingen have now discovered that neurons systematically recycle...

2008-10-27 15:00:27

U.S. scientists say they've found the nervous system uses a specific type of signal to produce stable retinal images despite vigorous head movements. Researchers at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies said that in most nerve cells, an electrical signal reaching the end of a cell releases molecules called neurotransmitters that travel across the synapse -- the space between nerve cells -- and may or may not trigger an electrical signal in an adjacent cell. "Most known synapses act as...

Word of the Day
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'