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Dendrites are branched filaments in nerve cells (neurons). The word dendrite dervives from the Greek word for tree which describes their branching tree-like structure. Here is a diagram of a typical neuron showing the position of the dendrites:

A typical neuron in the central nervous system (CNS) has many thousand dendrites. It is the dendrites that receive the bulk of nervous signals from other neurons via connections called synapses. Here is a diagram of some synapses:

Dendrites provide the postsynaptic terminal component of a synapse. The nerve transmissions are received from the axons of other neurons via small signalling molecules called neurotransmitters.

Dendrites differ from axons in a number of ways:

Dendrite links:
OUP USA: Dendrites
Structure of the Neuron - Dendrites
Dendrites vs Axons
Neuroscience for Kids - Neurons

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