reflex defined in 1951 yearreflex - reflex;
reflex - Very simple form of behaviour occurring in almost all animals with a nervous system, in which a certain kind of stimulus almost invariably evokes, with hardly perceptible delay, one specific kind of simple response. E.g. a pin stuck in one's foot evokes an immediate withdrawal. The constancy and immediacy of response depends on an inborn nervous pathway (i.e. one which is independent of experience), the reflex arc, along which the impulses travel. It involves the central nervous system. In the instance cited the stimulus causes groups of impulses to travel along a number of sensory nerve fibres into the spinal cord, where they are relayed through other nerve fibres, and impulses are set going down a group of motor nerve fibres which activate the muscles whose contraction withdraws the foot. Even the simplest reflex involves synapses in the central nervous system, and these provide opportunity for interaction of the nerve-cells involved in the reflex with other events in the central nervous system, allowing for example development of conditioned reflexes, or inhibition.
near reflex in Knolik
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