How to Learn and Understand the Functions of Motor Neurons of the Nervous System of Humans

This article discusses the various functions of motor neurons in the nervous system of humans.


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    Study the functions of motor neurons in humans. This article will discuss in this article motor neurons of the nervous system in humans due to its clinical significance in the practice of the neurological sciences of clinical medicine. Motor neurons are a class of cells of the nervous system in all living systems including human individuals. Neurons of the nervous system in humans are classified according to their function into three main types. One is sensory type of neurons and the other is motor type of neurons and the third is called integrative type of neurons. This third type of neurons is used to connect and transmit information between the sensory neurons and the motor neurons. This way motor function is carried out as a response to sensory stimulation. This order of function is observed in the normal process of communication between the various neurons of the nervous system.
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    Be familiar with the sensory input and motor out put in the nervous system of humans. Usually sensory input is obtained into the brain through electrical signals that travel along the pathways of the nervous system starting at the nerve receptors of the skin that are called free nerve endings to the sensory area of the cerebral cortex that is specialized for interpreting and transmitting this sensory information to motor neurons through the intermediate station of integrative neurons. This station of integrative neurons helps in passing the electrical signals from the sensory neurons to the motor neurons. This combination of sensory and motor function of neurons of the nervous system through the relay of integrative neurons is typical of all types of communications between neurons of the nervous system.
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    Learn about the physiology of motor neurons in the human body. This article is concerned mainly with motor neurons of the nervous system in humans. Motor neurons are clinically very important due to their role in carrying muscles contraction and relaxation. This is manifested clinically by their involvement in movement disorders that are usually the result of dysfunctional motor neurons in specific parts of the nervous system. The clinical manifestation of a movement disorder will depend on the type of motor neurons that are injured. This type of neurons is abundant in all parts of the nervous system including the central and the autonomic parts of the nervous system. Generally speaking motor neurons can be found in specific areas of the nervous system including all the length of the spinal cord and the parts of the brain that are called the cerebellum and the basal ganglia and the motor areas of the cerebral cortex.
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    Study the various neuronal anatomical areas in the body that have motor neurons. These above mentioned motor areas of the nervous system are the main areas that have motor neurons in which clinical manifestations are observed obviously in the case of their injury or dysfunction. Motor neurons of the cerebral cortex are responsible for giving orders to many parts of the body including parts of the brain its self and the muscles of extremities such as the muscles of the hands and the legs.
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    Learn about the various disorders that involve motor neurons. Motor neurons that are located in the cerebellum can give orders to the voluntary muscles of the body which in turn cause either its contraction or relaxation. Dysfunctional motor cells of the cerebellum can predispose to gait disorders such as inability to walk properly. Ataxia is another clinical manifestation of dysfunctional motor neurons of the cerebellum. In addition special types of nerves in the brain that are called cranial nerves can perform both sensory as well as motor functions. There are in the brain 12 pairs of cranial nerves. Some of these nerves have sensory functions only but others have both sensory as well as motor functions. For example, the ability of the pupil muscles of the eyes to contract and relax is mediated through one cranial nerve that is called oculomotor cranial nerve. Other cranial nerves can also serve motor functions.
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    Study clinical examples of motor disorders in the body. For example the ability of the individual to swallow food is mediated through the function of one cranial nerve that is called the glossopharyngeal nerve. In addition the normal function of the alimentary canal is controlled by the cranial nerve that is called the vagus nerve. This includes the motor orders that the muscles of the colon wall receive from neurons of this cranial nerve. Also motor neurons are spread along parts of the sympathetic part of the autonomic nervous system. These motor neurons can for example allow the person to perform normal urination and normal defecation. Defecation is a process that is mediated not only by the vagus nerve but also by motor neurons of the enteric nervous system that is spread along the muscles of the colon wall. The other part of motor neurons that is of extremely important function in the nervous system of humans is called the basal ganglia. This cluster of neurons contains so called nuclei of nervous cells that have both sensory as well as motor functions.
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    Learn about the role of motor neurons in the performance of cognitive function in humans. The motor function of neurons of this structure of the brain is very important for the proper function of mental cognition in humans. This brain structure is known to secrete important compound that has biological function that is related to the maintaining of healthy mental status by allowing for normal cognitive mental processes. It was observed experimentally that people who have excessive amount of this compound that is called dopamine in their body can develop cognitive dysfunction that is manifested by psychotic thinking that is detached from reality. Also other experimentally observed manifestations of this biochemical disorder are the development of paranoic symptoms as part of the handicapped cognitive function in these affected individuals.
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    Study the important mental disorder of psychosis. Some other observed symptoms of this metabolic disorder that is seen in part of the patients who suffer from this disease include episodes of grandiose thinking and the possession of ideas of reference. In addition symptoms of auditory and visual hallucinations can be seen in part of the patients that have this psychiatric disorder. Both of these two sensory dysfunctions are probably related to the either the disabled cognitive function of the affected individual or due dysfunctions in the sensory nerves that mediate the sensation modalities of the two cranial nerves that are responsible for transmitting sensory information into the cortex of the brain of these individuals. This disorder of dopamine excess in the brain is a major medical concern for the medical practice of psychiatry. This disorder can have many variable variations that include schizophrenia which is psychiatric disorder that is of genetic origin. People with this disease can grow up normally and yet develop the disorder later in life as a result of a stressful event that can trigger in these people the latent symptoms of this genetic psychiatric disease.
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    Learn about the psychiatric syndrome of schizophrenia. The medical symptoms that are associated with schizophrenic patients have similarity to other psychotic patients. These include the detachment of the thinking of these people from reality. This can be a manifestation of the poorly developed cognitive function in these affected people. Cognitive processes in these patients can be obtained by correcting the level of dopamine concentration in the brain of these patients. This hypothesis was corroborated by experimental results that showed the improvement in thinking processes of these patients when the level of this compound was diminished in the brain. Usually and clinically this is achieved by the administration of anti-psychotic drugs that function by blocking the receptors in the brain of this neurotransmitter.
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    Be familiar with the medications for this disorder. Cognitive improvement was seen in all patients that suffer from psychosis and who are schizophrenic. In addition other psychiatric disorders that involve this compound are seen in the mentally ill population. One example is called Huntington disease. Also deficiency of this important neurotransmitter has clinical manifestations that are of concern for the neurological science and not the psychiatric medicine. Parkinson disease is one form of dopamine deficiency that has neurological symptoms such as tremor in the various parts of the voluntary muscles of the body extremities. This disorder can also be triggered due to the administration of excessive amounts of anti-psychotic drugs that function to antagonize the effect of dopamine. Parkinson disease can be easily treated by increasing the amount of dopamine in the brain.

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Categories: Biology | Neurological Disorders