A node of Ranvier is a constriction in the myelin sheath that encases nerve fibres, occurring at more or less regular intervals along their length.
The nodes of Ranvier are packed with a high concentration of ion channels, which, upon stimulation, propagate the nerve impulse to the next node. In this manner the action potential jumps quickly from node to node along the fibre in a process called saltatory conduction.
- L. A. Ranvier:
Leçons sur l’histologie du système nerveux. 2 volumes. Paris, F. Savy, 1878.
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