The human Nervous System is divided into the Central Nervous System (CNS), containing the brain and spinal column, and the Peripheral Nervous System (PNS), which consists mainly of nerves that connect the CNS to every other part of the body.
Magnesium plays an important role in neural conduction in the nervous system with its main mechanism of action appearing to be via a voltage-gated antagonist action at the NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) receptor, which is a glutamate receptor and is the predominant molecular device for controlling synaptic plasticity and memory function. Recent studies have indicated the use of NMDA receptor antagonists, including magnesium, in the protection of the central nervous system from ischaemia (a restriction in blood supply to nerves and tissues that may cause a shortage of oxygen and glucose needed for cellular metabolism).
The applications for magnesium regarding the Nervous System exhibit particular focus on neuromuscular processes, including the release and modulation of various neurotransmitters throughout the body, and in cellular stability and membrane adhesion. The essential interplay of metal ions, including magnesium, calcium, sodium, and potassium, in addition to many other trace metals within nerve tissues is not only fundamental to proper nerve communication and function; it is required. Illness arising from deficiency in any of these common ions, particularly magnesium, may manifest anywhere throughout the Nervous System.
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