During the past two decades, the introduction of several modern neuroanatomical approaches resulted in a rapidly growing body of informations about neuronal pathways in the central nervous system. Several new neuronal connections between brain areas have been discovered, and the chemical nature (neurotransmitter content) of pathways has been determined by using highly specific neurochemical and immunohistochemical techniques. On the basis of these new informations, our knowledge and attitude to the general organization of neuronal connections have been changed substantially: 1. Neuronal pathways are multi-neuronal networks rather than simple chain of neurons, wherein informations are forwarded between two brain areas bidirectionally, meanwhile several additional brain regions are inter-connected by axon-collaterals. 2. A single neuronal cell may synthesize several neuropeptides which co-localized in and released from nerve terminals, and depending on the target sites they may act as neurotransmitters or neurohormones. In certain conditions, neuropeptides may also function as nerve growth factors by supporting the survival or the restitution of neuronal cells. 3. By the introduction of molecular imaging in neuroscience (visualization of oncogenes, specific mRNA's, etc), topographical studies on neuronal pathways are more and more completed by functional informations.
|Translated title of the contribution||Neural pathways--neural networks|
|Number of pages||9|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 9 1996|
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