What Are Clusters of Cell Bodies Called?

By Andrew Leahey; Updated April 24, 2017
Clusters of cell bodies are found in the nervous system.

Clusters of cell bodies have different names, depending on whether they are in the body. Some are found in the central nervous system, while others appear in the peripheral nervous system. To identify clusters of cell bodies, you must determine where they belong.

Central Nervous System

The central nervous system makes up most of the human nervous system. The central nervous system is responsible for receiving input from, and coordinating the movements of, all parts of the body. In this system, clusters of cell bodies are called nuclei.

Peripheral Nervous System

The peripheral nervous system is responsible for connecting the central nervous system to the body's extremities. In this system, clusters of cell bodies are called ganglia.


Nuclei are the most common arrangements of neurons in the body. For example, the structures of the brain called the thalamus and the hypothalamus are made up entirely of nuclei. These clusters of cell bodies make up most of the "grey matter" in the brain.


Ganglia string together to form a "plexus." Ganglia are the pathways for signals between neurons in the central nervous system, or nuclei, and other parts of the body.

About the Author

Andrew Leahey has been a writer since 1999, covering topics as varied as technology how-to guides and the politics of genetically modified organisms to African food supplies. He is pursuing his J.D. while renovating an 1887 farmhouse located in the New Jersey Pine Barrens.