What Is the Function of Dendrites?


Quick Answer

Dendrites receive information from neurons in the form of action potentials. These small structures are found at the end of neurons next to the axon.

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Full Answer

Dendrites receive electrical messages from the axons of neurons. The messages are either excitatory or inhibitory. Excitatory signals cause the neuron to increase its overall activity and release excitatory neurotransmitters. Inhibitory signals cause the neuron to decrease its overall activity and release inhibitory signals.

Dendrites that receive these signals can communicate them to other neurons in order to cause action potentials and communication signals to propagate or to dissolve. Both types of signals are essential for a healthy nervous system.

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