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The Vertebral Column

The Vertebral Column

  • The vertebral column is made up of bones called vertebrae placed end to end.
  • The vertebrae articulate with one another at the articulating facets.
  • In between one vertebra and another is the cartilaginous material called intervertebal disc.
  • The discs act as shock absorbers and allow for slight movement.
  • Each vertebra consists of a centrum and a neural arch which projects into a neural spine.
  • The neural canal is the cavity enclosed by the centrum and the neural arch.
  • The spinal cord is located inside the canal.
  • The neural spine and other projections e.g. transverse processes serve as points of attachment of muscles.


Type and number of vertebrae in human and rabbit



Cervical (Neck) 7 7
Thoracic ( Thorax) 12 12
Lumbar (Upper Abdomen) 5 7

Sacral (Lower Abdomen)

5 3-4


4 (cocyx) 16