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While nerves and neurons may seem similar or even synonymous, they are not.

Both our Central Nervous System (CNS) and the Peripheral Nervous System (PNS) rely on neurons to relay information across our body. While nerves and neurons may seem similar or even synonymous, they are not. A neuron is a specialised nerve cell which acts as the building blocks of our nervous system. It is specialised because it has the power to transmit and receive sensory data. The difference between nerves and neurons is that the latter are subparts of a nerve. To understand the functions of our nervous system, read on to know more on nerve cell parts. About Neurons Unlike other cells, neurons stop reproducing after birth. That means we only have a limited number of neurons. This aspect separates it from other cells. A neuron has a slightly elongated shape and has three major parts.

Did you know? Axons can be surprisingly long. The longest ones, called the ‘sciatic nerve’ travels all the way from the spine to your big toe! Different Types of Neurons in the Nervous System There are three major types of neurons. These are:

Task for you : You can write a short note on neurons, especially on motor neurons. As you know, the late Professor Stephen Hawking suffered from Motor Neurone disease. It is a degenerative disorder called Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (or ALS). Another name for it is Lou Gehrig’s disease. About Nerves A nerve is a bundle of axons which stays encased in epineurium. This is a connective tissue. All nerves carry ‘action impulses’ to different parts of the body based on stimuli. As you know by now, an axon is a part of a neuron. Therefore, if you are asked to write a nerve cell short note, it means you are writing on neurons. There are 3 broad types of nerves. 

For advanced students : Find out more about all 13 cranial nerves. What do they  do? Why is there a dispute over whether there are 12, and not 13, nerves?  

Studies estimate there are around 7 trillion nerves in a human body.

Yes, they are one and the same. The names are synonymous.

For a very long time, the answer was no. Recent studies have pointed that neurogenesis is possible.

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