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Chemical Synapse

Memories May Not Live in Neurons’ Synapses. The finding could mean recollections are more enduring than expected and disrupt plans for PTSD treatments

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In this awesome transmission micrograph you can see what a synapse actually looks like. It's the place where two neurons are kissing

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Chemical synapse. Chemical synapses are specialized junctions through which cells of the nervous system signal to one another and to non-neuronal cells such as muscles or glands. A chemical synapse between a motor neuron and a muscle cell is called a neuromuscular junction. Chemical synapses allow the neurons of the central nervous system to form interconnected neural circuits.

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Synapse in Brain Deep inside the brain, a neuron prepares to transmit a signal to its target. To capture that expectant, fleeting moment with painstaking detail, science illustrator Graham Johnson based his elegant, highly accurate drawing on ultra-thin micrographs of sequential brain slices. The brain contains billions of neurons, whose network of chemical messages form the basis of all thought, movement and behavior. Johnson's illustration tells the story of one such millisecond signal.

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The word synapse comes from synaptein which Sir Charles Scott Sherrington and colleagues coined from the Greek syn- (together) and haptein (to clasp). In the nervous system a synapse is a structure that permits a neuron to pass an electrical or chemical signal to another cell (neural or otherwise). Synapses are essential to neuronal function: neurons are cells that are specialized to pass signals to individual target cells and synapses are the means by which they do so. There are two…