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Nervous Coordination In Animals - Science Class 10

Different organs work together in an organism to carry out different functions, this is known as coordination. Proper control and coordination are necessary to carry out essential functions of life. 

Coordination is mainly of two types:
1. Nervous coordination
2. Chemical coordination

Animals - Nervous system  


The structural and functional unit of the nervous system.
Neuron (nerve cell) is the longest cell of the human body (up to 100 cm)
Neuron is made up of -
(i) Cell body
(ii) Cell processes (axon and dendron)

(i) Cell body: or Cyton or Soma or Perikaryon

  • It contains granular cytoplasm which is called neuroplasm.
  • Many small fibrils are present in the neuroplasm called neurofibrils for the conduction of nerve impulses.
  • Rough endoplasmic reticulum coils around the ribosome form a granule like structure called Nissl's granule or Tigroid body.
  • Nissl's granule is the centre of protein synthesis.
  • Energy for the conduction of nerve impulses is provided by numerous mitochondria.
  • Except for centriole, all other cell organelles are found in neuroplasm.

(ii) Cell process:
(a) Axon:

  • It is the longest cell process of cyton, its diameter is uniform and contains axoplasm.
  • Axoplasm of axon contains only neurofibrils and mitochondria.
  • Nissl's granules are absent.
  • Axon is covered by axolemma.
  • Axolemma may be covered by a layer of phospholipids which is called medulla or myelin sheath.
  • Myelin sheath acts as insulator and prevents leakage of ions.
  • Myelin sheath is discontinuous around the axon. These interruptions where the axon is uncovered by myelin sheath are called nodes of Ranvier.
  • Axon produces centrifugal conduction i.e. nerve impulse travels away from the cell body.
  • The terminal ends of axon are branched which are called telodendria.
  • Each telodendron ends in a swollen knob called synaptic knob.
  • Nerve fibres in which myelin sheath is present, are called medullated or myelinated nerve fibres and nerve fibres without myelin sheath, are called non-medullated or non-myelinated nerve fibres.

Axon is the functional part of nerve cell, therefore the term "nerve fibre" usually refers to the axon.


(b) Dendron:

  • It is small cell process.
  • Its fine branches are called 'dendrites'
  • Dendron receive the stimuli and produce centripetal conduction i.e. nerve impulse travels towards the cell body.
  • It is not covered by myelin sheath.

Differences between Axon and Dendron  

1Size LongSmall
2NumberEither absent or oneEither absent or one, mostly many
3DiameterUniformNon - Uniform
4BranchingGenerally unbranchedBranched
5Terminal knobs (Telodendrin)PresentAbsent
6Nissl's granuleAbsentPresent
7Myelin sheathPresentAbsent
8The direction of nerve impulseAway from cytonTowards cyton

Differences between medullated and non-medullated nerve fibre 

S.No.FeaturesMedullated nerve fibreNon-medullated nerve fibre
1OccurrenceWhite MatterGrey Matter
2SheathTwo: inner medullary, outer neurilemmaOnly neurilemma
Node of RanvierPresentAbsent
4Speed of nerve impulseFasterSlower

Type of Neurons

Nervous Coordination In Animals | Science Class 10 


Nervous Coordination In Animals | Science Class 10

Three Types of NeuronsThree Types of Neurons


The junction between two adjacent neurons i.e. between the axon ending of one neuron and dendrites of the next.

Synapse between two NeuronsSynapse between two Neurons

Nerve impulse

It is an electro-chemical information (signal) passing through neuron.

Neurotransmitters or Neurohormones

Chemical substances which either transmit or inhibit the message from one neuron to another.

Stimulatory NeurotransmittersInhibitory Neurotransmitters
Stimulate impulse at synapseInhibit impulse at synapse
Example: Acetyl choline (ACh)

 Example: GABA

(Gamma Amino Butyric Acid) 

 Neuro-muscular JunctionNeuro-muscular Junction

Transmission of Nerve Impulse across SynapseTransmission of Nerve Impulse across Synapse

Working of Neuron or Transmission of Nerve Impulse

  • Stimuli are detected by dendrites of receptor nerve cells located at our sense organs i.e. ear, eyes, nose, tongue and skin.
  • A chemical reaction occurs and creates electric impulse.
  • Impulse travels from dendrites and finally reaches axon endings (synaptic knobs)
  • Impulse releases some chemicals like Acetylcholine from synaptic knob.
  • By these chemicals, impulse transmits across synapse.
  • This initiates a similar electric impulse in a dendrite of the next neuron and thus impulse is transferred from one nerve cell to another.
  • Message is sent to CNS (brain & spinal cord) via sensory nerves.
  • CNS sends message to muscles via motor nerves.
  • Muscles of effector organ show response. 

Question for Nervous Coordination In Animals
Try yourself:In a neuron, conversion of electric signal to chemical reaction occurs at ______.
View Solution

Phonoreceptorssoundinternal ear
Olfactroreceptorssmellnasal chamber
Gustatoreceptorstastetaste buds on tongue

Physiology of Nerve Impulse 

  • At resting stage: in this stage, anions (negative ions) are present on the inner surface of the neuron membrane and cations (positive ions) are present on the outer surface of a neuron.
  • This neuron membrane is said to be polarised.
  • At exciting stage: As the neuron receive external stimuli, undergoes de-polarisation.
  • The anions are now on the outer surface and cations on the inner surface.
  • At this point, a nerve impulse is initiated.
  • Repolarisation: As the impulse conducts forward, repolarisation occurs at the previous point.
  • As the impulse reaches the nerve synapses, Acetylcholine is secreted by the terminal end. Through this, impulse is transmitted to the dendrites of the next nerve. Thus, the impulses are transmitted.
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FAQs on Nervous Coordination In Animals - Science Class 10

1. What is the nervous system in animals?
Ans. The nervous system in animals is a complex network of cells that transmits signals between different parts of the body. It is responsible for the coordination and regulation of bodily functions and behaviors.
2. How does the nervous system coordinate in animals?
Ans. The nervous system coordinates in animals by transmitting electrical and chemical signals between neurons and other cells. This allows animals to respond to their environment, move their bodies, and carry out essential functions such as breathing and digestion.
3. What is nervous coordination in animals?
Ans. Nervous coordination in animals refers to the process by which the nervous system integrates and processes information from the environment and the body to produce a coordinated response. This involves the stimulation of sensory receptors, transmission of signals between neurons, and activation of effector cells.
4. How do animals use nervous coordination to survive?
Ans. Animals use nervous coordination to survive by allowing them to respond quickly and appropriately to changes in their environment. For example, a predator may use its nervous system to detect prey, track its movements, and coordinate a successful attack. Similarly, prey animals may use their nervous system to detect danger and escape from predators.
5. What are some examples of nervous coordination in animals?
Ans. Some examples of nervous coordination in animals include the flight response in prey animals, the hunting behavior of predators, the ability of birds to navigate long distances during migration, and the complex social behaviors of primates.
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