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Dendrites$
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Greg Stuart, Nelson Spruston, and Michael Häusser

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198745273

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198745273.001.0001

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Dendrites as transmitters

Dendrites as transmitters

Chapter:
(p.603) Chapter 21 Dendrites as transmitters
Source:
Dendrites
Author(s):

Nathaniel Urban

Troy W. Margrie

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198745273.003.0021

As detailed in other chapters of this book, classically dendrites have been considered to be passive structures that receive signals and do little else. Beautiful in their shape but mundane in their function, dendrites have been compared with antennae, funnels, and a variety of other receivers of signals. This chapter focuses on the role of dendrites as transmitters rather than receivers, describing the way that through release of neurotransmitters dendrites can convey information about local activity across small numbers of synapses to nearby cells. It considers in detail the idea that, by acting at a local level across many branches of a neuron’s dendritic tree, dendritic release has a profound impact on global neuronal function in a variety of brain areas, with special focus on the olfactory bulb.

Keywords:   neurotransmitters, dendrites, olfactory bulb, synapses, dendritic release

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