cell body

noun

: the nucleus-containing central part of a neuron exclusive of its axons and dendrites that is the major structural element of the gray matter of the brain and spinal cord, the ganglia, and the retina see neuron illustration

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Indeed, every 3-cm increase in axon length is calculated to add more than double the volume of the neuronal cell body to the axon each day. Jeffrey M. Rodgers, Scientific American, 29 Sep. 2022 The cell body contains structures and organelles (’mini-organs’ inside the neuron) that keep it alive and carry out various cellular and genetic processes. Gabriel A. Silva, Forbes, 2 Aug. 2022 At the front are the dendrites, spidery and often dense projections that all converge and meet at the cell body. Gabriel A. Silva, Forbes, 2 Aug. 2022 By definition, such cells are proficient at concentrating gene products into vesicles and then removing them from the cell body through secretion. Quanta Magazine, 16 Aug. 2021 The dendrites transmit signals to the neuron’s cell body, where the signals are integrated. Quanta Magazine, 18 Feb. 2021 The reconstructed map, described today in Nature, showed that while one type of bipolar cell connects to the amacrine cells' filaments close to the cell body, another does do so farther away along the length of the filaments. Mo Costandi, Scientific American, 5 May 2014 Those signals would then get combined in the cell body, which would determine how the neuron as a whole would respond. Quanta Magazine, 14 Jan. 2020 Gray matter, on the other hand, is the pinkish-gray tissue rich in neuronal cell bodies. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, 24 July 2019 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cell body.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1878, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cell body was in 1878

Dictionary Entries Near cell body

Cite this Entry

“Cell body.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cell%20body. Accessed 5 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

cell body

noun

: the central part of a neuron that includes the nucleus but not the axons and dendrites

Medical Definition

cell body

noun

: the nucleus-containing central part of a neuron exclusive of its axons and dendrites that is the major structural element of the gray matter of the brain and spinal cord, the ganglia, and the retina

called also perikaryon, soma

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


Challenging Words You Should Know

  • hedgehog reading a book
  • Often used to describe “the march of time,” what does inexorable mean?
Spell It

Hear a word and type it out. How many can you get right?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ