Psychology Notes Ch.2 Essay

Submitted By lwynn2
Words: 1271
Pages: 6

Psychobiology – the study of the biological foundations of behavior and mental processes. I. Neurons: the Messengers A. The Composition of Neurons 1. Neurons, individual nerve cells, composed of axon, cell body, dendrites i. A collection of axons bundled together is a nerve ii. Myelin sheath improves efficiency of some axons. It provides insulation so that signals from adjacent neurons do not interfere with one another and to increase the speed of signals iii. Motor, sensory, and interneurons (between) are the three types of neurons iv. Polarization is the state a resting neuron is in v. Depolarization is when the inside of the neuron is positively charge relative to the outside 2. Remaining cells in nervous system are glial cells(or glia) vi. Perform a support function for the neurons B. The Neural Impulse 3. Impulses from other neurons must exceed a certain threshold of excitation before the neuron will fire 4. The all-or-none law – every firing of a particular neuron produces an impulse of the same strength 5. Immediately after firing, the neuron goes through an absolute refractory period for about a thousandth of a second (will not fire) 6. Following that, it is a relative refractory period when the cell is returning to the resting state vii. During this period it will fire but only if the impulse is stronger than normal C. The Synapse 7. The entire area composed of the axon terminals of one neuron, the synaptic space, and the dendrites and cell body of the next neuron is called the synapse 8. The end of the axon terminals are tiny swellings called terminal buttons or synaptic knobs 9. When neural impulses reach the end of the terminals, is causes the synaptic vesicles to release chemicals called neurotransmitters into the synaptic space 10. Neurotransmitters viii. Ach (Acetylcholine) –is an excitatory neurotransmitter often found where neurons meet skeletal muscles. Plays a role in arousal, attention, memory, and motivation. ix. Dopamine – an inhibitory neurotransmitter that effects voluntary movement, learning, memory, and emotions. x. Serotonin – known as “the mood molecule” because it is often involved in emotional experiences xi. Endorphins – reduce pain by inhibiting the neurons that transmit pain messages in the brain xii. Norepinephrine – influence breathing and awakeness.

II. The Central Nervous System D. Organization of the Nervous System 11. CNS: brain and spinal cord which contains more than 90% of the body’s neurons 12. PNS: nerves connecting brain and cord to every other part of the body E. The Brain 13. The Central Core xiii. Hindbrain: plays essential role in basic life processes a. Medulla controls breathing, heat rate, and blood pressure b. Pons regulate sleep-awake cycle c. Cerebellum is responsible for balance and reflexes, and coordination. Contains more neurons than the rest of the brain. i. Cerebellar dysfunction may include autism, schizophrenia, and ADD xiv. Midbrain: Hearing, sight, pain registration, eating, drinking, sex, emotion d. Site of the reticular formation whose main job is to send alter signals to the higher parts of the brain in response to incoming messages. Regulates attention and alertness. * Forebrain a. Contains the thalamus which is the relay station of the brain. Regulates higher brain centers and peripheral nervous system b. Not fully formed until after adolescence 14. The Limbic System xv. Hypothalamus: Hunger, thirst, sex drive, body temperature, rage, terror, and pleasure xvi.