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Schwann cells

The Schwann cells, also known as neurolemmocytes, are a type of glial cells present exclusively in the peripheral nervous system. They develop from precursors in the neural crest and can be differentiated into two types of cells: 

  • Myelinating Schwann cells
  • Non-myelinating Schwann cells

The myelinating Schwann cells form a myelin sheath around a segment of the axon of a single nerve. This is different from the process of myelin formation in the central nervous system where oligodendrocytes can form myelin sheaths around more nerves. 

The nonmyelinating Schwann cells enfold several axons to form a Remak bundle (a group of C fiber axons).

In summary, the Schwann cells play an essential function in the development, maintenance, function, and regeneration of the nerves in the peripheral nervous system.

Terminology English: Schwann cell
English synonyms: Neurolemmocyte
Latin: Schwannocytus
Latin synonyms: Neurolemmocytus
Definition Myeline cell of the peripheral central system
Types Myelinating Schwann cells and nonmyelinating Schwann cells
Function Formation of the myelin sheath, development, maintenance, function and regeneration of peripheral nerves.

Learn more about the histology of the peripheral nerves with the following study unit: 

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