Definition of neuron in US English:


(British neurone)


  • A specialized cell transmitting nerve impulses; a nerve cell.

    • ‘It is possible to isolate a multipotent stem cell from neural crest that can give rise to neurons, glia, and smooth muscle.’
    • ‘Botulinum toxin induces weakness of striated muscles by inhibiting transmission of alpha motor neurones at the neuromuscular junction.’
    • ‘It is made up from millions of nerve cells called neurones that control your body's functions, senses and thoughts.’
    • ‘The thalamus (of which there is one on each side) is a large and important mass of nerve cells or neurons.’
    • ‘These are cells which can be the raw material for all sorts of organs and tissues, from the pancreas to nerve cells, or neurones in the brain, to heart cells.’


Late 19th century: from Greek neuron, special use of the literal sense ‘sinew, tendon’. See nerve.