The brain is the most complex and highly specialised of all mammalian organs. Understanding the complexity of its function remains man’s greatest challenge. The functional unit is the neurone, or excitable nerve cell, making anatomical and chemical connections with other units in the system. Many of the essential biochemical connections of the nerve cell are dependent upon special morphological features: synaptic contact is mediated by chemical molecules, ‘neurotransmitters’ which ensure the continued propagation of electrical impulses through sequential units of the system. Also closely related to the morphology of the nervous system is the chemical energy expended in maintaining distribution gradients of cations across cellular membranes.
- McIlwain, H. and Bachelard, H.S. (1971), Biochemistry and the Central Nervous System (4th ed.), Churchill, London.Google Scholar
- CIBA Foundation Symposium (1972), Lipids, Malnutrition and the Developing Brain, Elsevier, Amsterdam.Google Scholar
- Scottish Council for Research in Education (1949), The Trend of Scottish Intelligence London University Press, London.Google Scholar
- Cumings, J.N. and Kremer, M. (1968), Biochemical Aspects of Neurological Disorders (3rd Series), Blackwell, Oxford.Google Scholar
- Cumings, J.N. (1972), (ed.) Biochemical Aspects of Nervous Diseases, Plenum, London.Google Scholar