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57 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
The Nervous System
A network of billions of cells that detect what is going on inside and outside the body and guides appropriate responses.
The 3 functions of the nervous system
1. To receive information (input)

2. To integrate that information with past experiences (processing)

3. To guide actions (output)
Neurons
Specialized cells of the nervous system that send & receive messages.
Glial Cells
They hold neurons together, direct growth, & help restore damaged neurons.
Dendrites
Fibers that receive signals from the axons of other neurons.
Axon
Each neuron generally has only one, whose function is to carry signals away from the cell body.
How do neurons communicate?
Neurons have long, thin fibers that reach outward from the cell body like arms called axons and dendrites. When these fibers get close to other neurons, communication between the cells can occur.
Action Potential
An electrochemical impulse or message that is sent down an axon and stimulates release of a neurotransmitter.
Refractory Period
A short recovery period after cell firing, during which the cell cannot fire again.
Myelin
A fatty substance that wraps around some axons like a stocking and speeds up action potentials.
Neurotransmitter
A chemical that transfers messages across synapses.
Synapses
Tiny gaps between the axon of one neuron and the dendrites of another.
The 3 Classes of Neurotransmitters
1. Small molecules

2. Peptides

3. Gases
Small molecules include which neurotransmitters?
1. Acetylcholine (memory, movement, Alzheimer’s disease)

2. Norepinephrine (mood, sleep, learning, depression)

3. Serotonin (mood, appetite, impulsivity, depression)

4. Dopamine (movement, reward, Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia)

5. GABA (sleep, movement, anxiety, epilepsy, Huntington’s disease)

6. Glutamate (memory, stroke damage)
Peptides include which neurotransmitters?
1. Endorphins (pain control)
Gases include which neurotransmitters?
1. Nitric oxide (formation of memory)
The 2 Major Divisions of the Nervous System
1. Central nervous system (CNS)

2. Peripheral nervous system
Central Nervous System (CNS)
The part of the nervous system that is made up of the brain and the spinal cord.
Peripheral Nervous System
The part of the nervous system that sends messages to & from the central nervous system.
The 2 Subsystems of the Peripheral Nervous System
1. Somatic nervous system

2. Autonomic nervous system
Somatic Nervous System
Subsystem of the peripheral nervous system that transmits information from the senses to the central nervous system & carries signals from the CNS to the muscles that move the skeleton.
Autonomic Nervous System
Subsystem of the peripheral nervous system that carries messages between the CNS & the heart, lungs, & other organs & glands in the body.
The 2 Subsystems of the Autonomic Nervous System
1. Sympathetic nervous system

2. Parasympathetic nervous system
Sympathetic Nervous System
The subsystem of the autonomic nervous system that readies the body for vigorous activity.
Parasympathetic Nervous System
The subsystem of the autonomic nervous system that typically influences activity related to the protection, nourishment, & growth of the body.
Spinal Cord
The part of the central nervous system that receives information from the senses, passes these signals to the brain, & sends messages from the brain to the body.
Reflexes
Simple, involuntary, unlearned behaviors directed by the spinal cord without instructions from the brain.
Techniques Scientists Use to Study the Brain
1. EEG (electroencephalograph)

2. PET (positrin emission tomography) & SPECT (single-photon emission computed tomography)

3. MRI (magentic resonance imaging)

4. TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulaiton)
EEG (electroencephalograph)
Multiple electrodes are pasted to the outside of the head. It then shows lines that chart the summated electrical fields resulting from the activity of billions fo neurons.
PET (positrin emission tomography) & SPECT (single-photon emission computed tomography)
Positrons & photons are emissions from radioactive substances that help show an image of the amount and localization of any molecule that can be injected in radioactive form, such as neurotransmitters, drugs, or tracers for blood flow or glucose use.
MRI (magentic resonance imaging)
Exposes the brain to a magnetic field & measures radiofrequency waves. A traditional MRI shows a high-resolution image of brain anatomy. A functional MRI (fMRI) provides images of changes in blood flow. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) shows water flow in neural fibers, thus revealing the ‘wiring diagram’ of neural connections in the brain.
TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulaiton)
Temporarily disrupts electrical activity of a small region of brain by exposing it to an intense magnetic field. Normal function of a particular brain region can be studied by observing changes after TMS is applied to a specific location.
Hindbrain
The portion of the brain that lies just inside the skull & is a continuation of the spinal cord.
Structures of the Hindbrain
1. Medulla

2. Reticular formation

3. Cerebellum
Medulla
The area of the hindbrain that controls vital autonomic functions such as heart rate, blood pressure, & breathing.
Reticular Formation
A collection of cells & fibers in the hindbrain & midbrain that are involved in arousal & attention.
Cerebellum
The part of the hindbrain that controls finely coordinated movements.
Midbrain
A small structure between the hindbrain & the forebrain that helps produce smooth movements. Turning your head to reflexively look in the direction of a loud sound & maintaining focus while smoothly turning one’s head are examples of the midbrain at work.
Forebrain
The part of the brain responsible for the most complex aspects of behavior & mental life.
Structures of the Forebrain
1. Thalamus

2. Hypothalamus

3. Amygdala

4. Hippocampus
Thalamus
A forebrain structure that relays messages from most sense organs to higher brain areas.
Hypothalamus
A forebrain structure that regulates hunger, thirst & sex drives, with many connections to & from the autonomic nervous system & other parts of the brain.
Amygdala
A forebrain structure that links information from various systems & plays a role in emotions.
Hippocampus
A forebrain structure associated with the formation of new memories.
Cerebral Cortex
The outer surface of the forebrain; it is our primary processing area. The total area is one to two square feet, but it fits in the skull because it is wrinkled & folded.
The 4 Lobes of the Cerebral Cortex
1. Frontal

2. Parietal

3. Occipital

4. Temporal
Frontal Lobe
Lobe located in the front of the brain; responsible for voluntary movement.
Parietal Lobe
Lobe located on the top of the brain; receives touch stimulus.
Occipital Lobe
Lobe located in the back of the brain; receives visual stimulus.
Temporal Lobe
Lobe located on the sides of the brain; receives auditory stimulus.
Sensory Cortex
The part of the cerebral cortex located in the parietal, occipital & temporal lobes that receives stimulus information from the skin, eyes, & ears, respectively.
Motor Cortex
The part of the cerebral cortex that controls voluntary movement located in the frontal lobe.
Association Cortex
The part of the cerebral cortex that integrates sensory and motor information & performs complex cognitive tasks, and is located in the frontal and parietal lobes.
Broca’s Area
Located in the association cortex in the frontal lobe on the left side of the brain and plays a role in speech organization. Damage to this area results in grammatical errors and slow speech.
Wernicke’s Area
Located in the association cortex on the left side of the brain in the temporal lobe. Damage to this area results in an inablitiy to understand the meaning of words or to speak understandably.
Plasticity
A property of the central nervous system that has the ability to strengthen neural connections at synapses, as well as to establish new connections.
Fight-Or-Flight Syndrome
Physical reactions initiated by the sympathetic nervous system that prepare the body to fight or to run from a threatening situation.