[noo r-on, nyoo r-]
  1. Cell Biology. a specialized, impulse-conducting cell that is the functional unit of the nervous system, consisting of the cell body and its processes, the axon and dendrites.
Also especially British, neu·rone [noo r-ohn, nyoo r-] /ˈnʊər oʊn, ˈnyʊər-/.
Compare synapse.

Origin of neuron

First recorded in 1880–85, neuron is from the Greek word neûron sinew, cord, nerve
Also called nerve cell.
Related formsneu·ron·al [noo r-uh-nl, nyoo r-, noo-rohn-l, nyoo-] /ˈnʊər ə nl, ˈnyʊər-, nʊˈroʊn l, nyʊ-/, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for neurons

Contemporary Examples of neurons

Historical Examples of neurons

  • This over excitation of neurons may come from without, or may come from within.


    James J. Walsh

  • It has been said that the movement of neurons has been observed in certain of the Medusae.


    James J. Walsh

  • There is usually a group of neurons in the path from the surface to the brain cortex.


    James J. Walsh

  • Potts almost felt the currents surging through the neurons of his brain and sensed a throbbing on the inside of his skull.

    A Thought For Tomorrow

    Robert E. Gilbert

  • Let us next examine the structure of the nerve cells or neurons part of which serve as pathways for these messages.

    A Civic Biology

    George William Hunter

Word Origin and History for neurons



"a nerve cell with appendages," 1891, from German Neuron, from Greek neuron (see neuro-). Used earlier (1884) for "the spinal cord and brain."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

neurons in Medicine


  1. Any of the impulse-conducting cells that constitute the brain, spinal column, and nerves, consisting of a nucleated cell body with one or more dendrites and a single axon.nerve cell neurocyte
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

neurons in Science


  1. A cell of the nervous system. Neurons typically consist of a cell body, which contains a nucleus and receives incoming nerve impulses, and an axon, which carries impulses away from the cell body. Also called nerve cell
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

neurons in Culture


[(noor-onz, nyoor-onz)]

The basic unit of nerve tissue; the nerve cells. Neurons carry and transmit electrical signals throughout the nervous system.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.