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Investigation Of The Speed Of A Nerve Impulse

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INVESTIGATION OF THE SPEED OF A NERVE IMPULSE

INTRODUCTION
The speed of a nerve impulse is an important aspect of the human nervous system and can be altered by different stimulants. In 1850, Hermann von Helmholtz succeeded in measuring the speed of the nerve impulse. He found it to be much slower than the previously believed speed of 50 to 100 meters per second. This finding was then followed by intensive investigation of the nervous system within the framework of the physical and biological sciences. However modern measurements range from 6 to 122 meters per second, depending on the type of nerve fibre (Jonides, Rozin and Gleitman, 1983).
The nervous system consists of the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nerves. The brain and spinal cord form the central nervous system and nerves form the peripheral nervous system. The nervous system helps all the parts of the body to communicate with each other. It also reacts to changes from both outside and inside the body. The nervous system uses both electrical and chemical means to send and receive messages.
The basic building blocks of the anatomy and physiology of the nervous system are nerve cells, or neurons. The brain consists of around 100 billion neurons, they are specialized to respond to stimuli and transmit impulses from one part of the body to another. Neurons can be divided into three types, sensory, motor and inter neurons. Sensory neurons pass information about stimuli such as light, sound, touch and heat from both
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