Central Nervous System

Last update: September 15, 2022
By BrainMatters


The nervous system is a communication network that allows the body to function in the environment. A distinction is made between peripheral nervous system and central nervous system. The central nervous system consists of the brain and the spinal cord. The spinal cord is the bundle of nerve tracts (also called axons) that runs from the brain, through the spine to the rest of the body. In addition to these nerves, the cranial nerves also belong to the central nervous system. These cranial nerves leave the brain directly, without passing through the spinal cord. They control the head, face, and neck muscles and transmit sensory information from the senses in the face.


The central nervous system can be seen as the control center of the nervous system and has roughly three functions:

  1. It receives information from the senses about our environment and about our own bodies. This information is also called sensory information.
  2. It processes this information and connects it to other information, for example things stored in memory
  3. The processed information is used to control the muscles and organs.

Author: Bart Aben (translated by Thomas von Rein)

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