One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
verb[with object]Zoology Anatomy
Supply (an organ or other body part) with nerves.
- ‘The greater superficial petrosal nerve carries the preganglionic parasympathetic fibres from the facial nerve to eventually innervate the lacrimal glands.’
- ‘The pudendal nerve innervates the few striated muscles within the prostatic capsule.’
- ‘The hypoglossal and glossopharyngeal nerves innervate pharyngeal dilator muscles.’
- ‘Autonomic and somatic nerves innervate the penis.’
- ‘This diurnal variation in melatonin synthesis is brought about by norepinephrine secreted by the postganglionic sympathetic nerves that innervate the pineal gland.’
Late 19th century: from in- ‘into’ + nerve + -ate.
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