Through a process of differentiation, a neuron undergoes growth to develop a long extended arm called the axon. Electrical impulses pass along the axon, carrying a signal that will act as a stimulus for a certain muscle or cell. The axon is covered with electrical insulator called the Myelin Sheath (made up of many Schwann cells wrapped around the axon). In between there are areas of unmyelinated axon, known as Nodes of Ranvier. Impulses jump from node to node along the axon in a process called saltatory conduction which increases the speed of impulse transmission. Short branched ends of the axon are called the axon termini, and these are where signals are passed along to the next neuron by the use of electrochemical signals and neurotransmitter chemicals.
- ↑ Lodish H, Berk A, Kaiser A, Krieger M, Scott M, Bretscher A, Ploegh H (2010), Molecular Cell Biology, 6th edition, New York : WH Freeman