nerve impulse

noun

Definition of nerve impulse 

: the progressive physicochemical change in the membrane of a nerve fiber that follows stimulation and serves to transmit a record of sensation from a receptor or an instruction to act to an effector

called also nervous impulse

Examples of nerve impulse in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018 That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018 That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018 That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018 That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018 That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018 That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018 That movement of ions is the basis for many of the body’s functions, like nerve impulses, muscle contractions and digestion. Katie Thomas, BostonGlobe.com, "Jens Christian Skou, 99, Nobel recipient in chemistry," 4 June 2018

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

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First Known Use of nerve impulse

1870, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

14 Sep 2018

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The first known use of nerve impulse was in 1870

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More Definitions for nerve impulse

nerve impulse

noun

Kids Definition of nerve impulse

: an electrical signal carried by nerve cells which relays information from the body's sense organs to the brain and spinal cord or instructions from the brain and spinal cord to a body part (as a muscle or gland)

nerve impulse

noun
variants: also nervous impulse

Medical Definition of nerve impulse 

: an electrical signal that travels along a nerve fiber in response to a stimulus and serves to transmit a record of sensation from a receptor or an instruction to act to an effector : the propagation of an action potential along the length of a neuron

Note: A nerve impulse occurs when a stimulus exceeds a certain threshold resulting in the movement of positively charged sodium ions across the cell membrane of a neuron so that the electrical charges inside and outside the membrane are temporarily reversed.

More from Merriam-Webster on nerve impulse

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about nerve impulse

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