Dendrites are branches on a neuron that receive electrical contacts from other neural cells.  The primary function of dendrites is to ensure that signals are passed from neuron to neuron. Dendrite branches host proteins such as sodium, calcium, and potassium that assist in channeling these electrical contacts.

Dendrites can be affected by disorders that delay information transmission or neurotransmitter production, medications, or from overactive neurons. They can lengthen and quicken information exchange through learning, or shorten from damage, such as alcoholism.