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Among the most important functions of glial cells are to support neurons and hold them in place; to supply nutrients to neurons; to insulate neurons electrically; to destroy pathogens and remove dead neurons; and to provide guidance cues directing the axons of neurons to their targets.

A very important type of glial cell (oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system, and Schwann cells in the peripheral nervous system) generates layers of a fatty substance called myelin that wraps around axons and provides electrical insulation which allows them to transmit action potentials much more rapidly and efficiently.

Both autonomic and enteric nervous systems function involuntarily.

Nerves that exit from the cranium are called cranial nerves while those exiting from the spinal cord are called spinal nerves.

The neurons that give rise to nerves do not lie entirely within the nerves themselves—their cell bodies reside within the brain, spinal cord, or peripheral ganglia Glial cells (named from the Greek for "glue") are non-neuronal cells that provide support and nutrition, maintain homeostasis, form myelin, and participate in signal transmission in the nervous system.

In the human brain, it is estimated that the total number of glia roughly equals the number of neurons, although the proportions vary in different brain areas.

It controls the mouthparts, the salivary glands and certain muscles.

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