Nerve Endings by Richard Rapport
The Discovery of the Synapse

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Two doctors, the Spaniard Cajal and the Italian Golgi, were racing against each other to find out what brain cells looked like and how they managed to communicate with one another. Both did their most important research in labs set up on their kitchen tables, for lack of better facilities; and both made landmark findings that led to their jointly receiving the 1906 Nobel Prize. Yet one man would find that neurons communicated over a gap, later named the 'synapse', while the other would die convinced that ever brain cell connected to the next. From Parkinson's to neurosurgery, from the mechanics of memory to clinical depression, modern medicine is ever indebted to the one who interpreted the elusive - and rather extraordinary - anatomy of the nerve cell. This is the story not only of one of the nineteenth-century's greatest discoveries but also of the frailty, perseverance, and creativity of human beings.

About Richard Rapport

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Published May 1, 2005 by W. W. Norton & Company. 224 pages
Genres: Nature & Wildlife, Science & Math, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Nerve Endings

Project MUSE

From the hints scattered throughout this book, one is left with the strong suspicion that much more remains to be said about the processes that led to the ultimate triumph of our current understanding of the form and function of the cellular elements of the nervous system.

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