noun, plural: interneurons
(1) Any local circuit neuron of the central nervous system that relays impulses between sensory neuron and motor neuron.
(2) A multipolar neuron that links sensory neuron to motor neuron in neural pathway.
Neurons (also called nerve cells) are specialized cells that function primarily in the transmission of nerve impulses. They have cellular processes such as dendrites and axons. The dendrites are shorter processes in the cell body of a neuron. They receive inputs from other neurons and conduct signals to the cell body. The axon is a longer, single processes of the cell soma and relay signals towards the tip, which is called synaptic terminal. There are three main types of neurons: (1) sensory neuron, (2) interneuron, and (3) motor neuron. The nerve cells of the central nervous system are all interneurons. In human brain, there are about 100 billion interneurons. Example is the Golgi cell found in the cerebellum. The interneurons receive impulses from the sensory neurons. They interpret the information received from other neurons and relay impulses to motor neurons for an appropriate response. This function of the interneuron is called integration.
Word origin: Latin, meaning between + neuron
Related forms: interneuronal (adjective)
- association neuron
- internuncial neuron
- intercalary neuron
- relay neuron