Visualizing Neurons

Cultured Mouse Hippocampal Pyramidal Neuron expressing GFP

courtesy of Dr. Dezhi Liao

The neuron has been modified genetically to produce the green fluorescent protein (GFP) first isolated from the jellyfish Aequorea victoria.

Move your mouse over the image to show axon, dendrite, and cell body labels. Click and hold the mouse button to see dendritic spines, presynaptic axonal sites, and nerve terminals highlighted. According to Dr. Liao, "Dendritic spines are the fundamental elements of computational processing in the brain."

More information and a video about neurons is available at The Exploratorium