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Dendrite Regeneration Essay

1133 words - 5 pages

On January 9, 2014 a new discovery was made, Penn State university molecular biologists discovered that dendrites are able to regenerate after deletion. In most neurons, in order for one to function properly you would need both the axons and dendrites. In animals there is always constant regeneration and degeneration. When you look deeper into the idea of regeneration and degeneration we notice that regeneration with peripheral neurons occur more often than central neurons. (Huebner & Strittmatter, 2009) Peripheral neurons come from the peripheral nervous system (PNS). (Jasvinder, 2013) They include all the neurons in the body minus the brain or spinal cord, and functions to supply ...view middle of the document...

(Boeree, 2009) Another name for dendrite branching is dendrite arborisation (DA). They look like tree like extensions that branches out in order to increase the surface area. (Figure 1) Sometimes a neuron consists of one dendrite branch, while others can contain more than one. These tree like extensions are used to receive information that are being passed from neurons to neurons. They receive information from either sensory receptors, or motor neurons, and that information is then sent to the cell body for further actions.

To be able to understand if dendrites were able to regenerate, biologists first had to remove all the dendrites from the neurons. This would either result to one of the two things either the cells would die or regenerate. (Stone, Albertson, Chen & Melissa, 2014) Before attempting the experiments the biologists expected the cells to die since they were not able to receive information. After conducting the experiment they came to a shocking conclusion where within a few hours the dendrites begin to regrow. If left for a couple more days for further development they would almost have the entire arbour again. This was tested with two types of da neurons; ddaE neurons and the ddaC neurons. At the very end of the ddaE, which was also one of the simplest type of neuron it was able to regenerate a new branched arbour even after completely removing the dendrite. (Figure 2) (Stone, Albertson, Chen & Melissa, 2014) The new branch also had the same complexity as the undamaged neurons. (Stone, Albertson, Chen & Melissa, 2014)

In the second experiment they tested it on a different type of neuron this was the ddaC neurons. The biologists tested this with 27 neurons and all of them except two came to the result where the ddaC neuron was able to regenerate itself to cover it’s complete territory. (Figure 3) (Stone, Albertson, Chen & Melissa, 2014)

Further on biologists tested on whether the new dendrites were able to function as well as undamaged dendrites and that came to a positive conclusion. So therefore from the outcomes of these experiments biologists were able to prove that the regrowth of dendrites was possible and that the new dendrites that were produced functioned just as well as the undamaged ones. (Stone, Albertson, Chen & Melissa, 2014)
This new finding is a crucial because people now know that dendrites are able to regrow, where as in the previous years it has only been a question without a definite answer. This is just the...

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