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dendritic spine
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UMLS ID - C0872341
Definition - Small protuberances, usually ~ 1µm in length, from the dendritic shafts of some neurons specialized for receiving synaptic contacts. Spines are frequent on the dendrites of the principal cells of most brain regions, notably on the pyramidal cells of cerebral cortex and the Purkinje cells of the cerebellar cortex. For these cells, more than 90% of their excitatory synapses occur on dendritic spines. Therefore, spines may play an important role in learning and memory.
Source - Adapted from Synapse Web http://synapses.mcg.edu/anatomy/dendrite/dendrite.stm by Maryann Martone
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