inhibitory synapse

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Related to inhibitory synapse: Excitatory synapse

inhibitory synapse

A synapse which passes an inhibitory signal to its post-synaptic neuron or neurons causing it or them to be less likely to have an action potential or to have reduced frequency of action potentials.


the junction between the processes of two neurons or between a neuron and an effector organ, where neural impulses are transmitted by chemical means. The impulse causes the release of a neurotransmitter (e.g. acetylcholine or norepinephrine) from the presynaptic membrane of the axon terminal. The neurotransmitter molecules diffuse across the synaptic cleft, bind with specific receptors on the postsynaptic membrane, causing depolarization or hyperpolarization of the postsynaptic cell. See also neuron.

adrenergic synapse
the neurotransmitter is norepinephrine. See also adrenergic (1).
axoaxonic synapse
axodendritic synapse
axodendrosomatic synapse
one between the axon of one neuron and the dendrites and body of another.
axosomatic synapse
cholinergic synapse
the neurotransmitter is acetylcholine. See also cholinergic.
dendrodendritic synapse
one from a dendrite of one cell to a dendrite of another.
excitatory synapse
a synapse in which the transmission of impulses is electrical not chemical. Found only in fish and invertebrates.
inhibitory synapse
hyperpolarizing electrical current is used to raise the threshold for the stimulation of a discharge of an impulse from the particular kind of nerve cell, found only in fish.
References in periodicals archive ?
They reached this conclusion by labelling inhibitory synapses in mouse brains with fluorescent proteins and then tracking them for several weeks using a specialised microscope.
On the other side, phenytoin may also block the release in inhibitory synapses, in such a manner that the final result will be the sum of its effects on these systems.
Scanziani further explained that the study shows that the inhibitory neurons were the master regulators that contact hundreds or thousands of cells and made sure that the inhibitory synapses at each of these contacts was matched to the different amounts of excitation that these cells were receiving.
The generation of a synapsin III knock-out mice provided the evidence of a unique function of this gene when compared to synapsin I and II, indicating a role in early axon development and the regulation of neurotransmitter release in mature synapses with evidence for decreased basal transmission at inhibitory synapses but not at excitatory synapses (34).
The fluorescent markers allow scientists to see live excitatory and inhibitory synapses for the first time - and, importantly, how they change as new memories are formed.