Paraneurons (a term originated by Fujita in 1975) are groups of cells which have not been classified as neurons and yet share certain morphological and functional features with neurons. Paraneurons are defined by three criteria: (1) They possess neurosecretion-like and/or synaptic-vesicle-like granules. (2) They produce substances identical with or related to neurosecretions or neurotransmitters. (3) They recognize adequate stimuli and respond to them by the release of their secretions. As item (3) indicates, paraneurons can be characterized as receptosecretory cells. If the receptive function of a cell appears dominant, it can be called a sensory paraneuron. If the secretory function comes to the front, the cell can be called a secretory or endocrine paraneuron.
KeywordsHair Cell Endocrine Cell Carotid Body Bioactive Peptide Gustatory Cell
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