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When the brain's wiring breaks

03:01 EDT 12 Sep 2017 | Medical Xpress

Among all the bad things that can happen to the brain when it is severely jolted – in a car accident, for example – one of the most common and worrisome is axon damage. Axons are the long stalks that grow out of the bodies of neurons and carry signals to other neurons. They are part of the brain's "wiring," and they sometimes grow to amazing lengths – from the brain all the way down to the spinal cord. But axons are thin and fragile. When the brain receives a strong blow, axons are often stressed past their structural limits. They either break or swiftly degenerate.

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