Reflex arc - Definition

April 2017


A reflex arc is a type of neural pathway that culminates in the production of a reflex. Information about the environment surrounding the body is picked up by sensory receptors, which transcribe the information as a neural message sent to the central nervous system that in turn interprets the information and sends back a neural impulse to provoke a response. The many processes that use a reflex arc include deep tendon, or stretch reflexes, where an exterior stimula is interpreted as information by a sensory neuron, either afferent or centripetal, which transmits the information, at which point the response generated by a cell in the central nervous system is performed by a motor neuron, either efferent or centrifugal, which causes a muscle to contract. Similar processes exist for other functions, notably for hormonal processes, such as the stimulation of gland secretion of molecules in response to certain stimuli.


Original article published by . Translated by Jeff. Latest update on November 19, 2013 at 10:31 AM by Jeff.
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