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Biology: The Dynamic Science (Mind...

4th Edition
Peter J. Russell + 2 others
ISBN: 9781305389892

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BuyFindarrow_forward

Biology: The Dynamic Science (Mind...

4th Edition
Peter J. Russell + 2 others
ISBN: 9781305389892
Textbook Problem

What is the difference between an electrical synapse and achemical synapse?

Summary Introduction

To review:

The differences between chemical synapse and electrical synapse.

Introduction:

The signals are transmitted by neurons in the form of action potential. The plasma membrane of the neuron contains negative charge on the outer surface and positive charge in the inner surface due to which the membrane potential is generated. Upon exposure to a stimulus, the neurons open their sodium ion channels that depolarize the plasma membrane and generate an electrical wave. The wave travels along the length of the neuron and is transmitted in the dendrites of the next neuron. The signals are also transmitted in the form of chemical signals, in which neurotransmitters play an important role.

Explanation

The synapses are the connections that are formed between the axons and the dendrites of pre-synaptic and post-synaptic neurons, respectively. There are two types of synapses, namely, the electrical synapse and the chemical synapse. The chemical synapse involves chemical molecules in the form of neurotransmitters. The neurotransmitters are packed in the synaptic vesicles, which fuse with the plasma membrane of axon terminal. Once the signals are received by the neurons, the synaptic vesicles release their contents in the chemical synapse.

The neurotransmitters then bind to the receptors that are present on the post-synaptic membrane. In electrical synapses, the presynaptic neuron and the postsynaptic neuron are in direct contact with each other. When the action potential is generated in one neuron the ions are transferred from one neuron to another through the cytosol...

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