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What is a presynaptic neuron?

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Quick Answer

A presynaptic neuron is a nerve cell that releases chemical messengers called neurotransmitters into the synapse, which is a gap at the end of a neuron. The postsynaptic neuron is the nerve cell that then receives these neurotransmitters. This is one of the basic ways nerve cells transmit information.

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Full Answer

There are several different types of nerve cells in the body. Sensory neurons carry information from receptor cells in the body to the brain. Motor neurons carry information from the brain to the muscles, and interneurons carry information between neurons.

Neurotransmitters are essential to nerve cell communication, and scientists have identified more than 100 different types. Some of the more well-known ones include endorphins, which are associated with emotions and the perception of pain, and dopamine, which is associated with pleasurable feelings.

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