Definition of afferent in English:


Syllabification: af·fer·ent
Pronunciation: /ˈaf(ə)rənt


  • Conducting or conducted inward or toward something (for nerves, the central nervous system; for blood vessels, the organ supplied). The opposite of efferent.
    More example sentences
    • Cough is mediated by the interaction of sensory afferent nerves, central cough reflexes, and local axon reflexes.
    • In addition, the dorsal central column of primary afferent fibers within the spinal cord appears susceptible to the inhibitory effects of hypoxia in rats.
    • Sensory systems are generally presumed to convey peripheral afferent signals to the central nervous system with a high degree of fidelity.


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  • An afferent nerve fiber or vessel.
    More example sentences
    • It may also be the site of projection of proprioceptive afferents from the respiratory muscles and chest wall.
    • In addition, cholinergic afferents can be stimulated by a variety of mediators involved in allergen-induced airway inflammation.
    • Muscle receptor afferents are involved in the level and timing of respiratory activity.


mid 19th century: from Latin afferent- 'bringing toward', from the verb afferre, from ad- 'to' + ferre 'bring'.

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