Biopsychology Revision

Run through of most (if not all) aspects of Biopsych required in 2016 AS psychology, if there's any mistakes I do apologise! Good luck. X

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Biopsychology
The nervous system (NS) ­ divides into the peripheral nervous system (PNS) and the central nervous system (CNS)
THE CNS consists of the brain & spinal cord and is concerned with maintaining life functions and psychological processes
Brain ­ 1. The CEREBRUM (left and right hemisphere) 2. The CEREBELLUM (balance and coordination)
3. The DIANCEPHALON 4. The BRAIN STEM (regulates autonomic functions i.e
breathing)
RECIEVES information from the SENSORY RECEPTORS in the SENSE ORGANS ­ via the SENSORY NEURON (towards brain)
SENDS messages to EFFECTOR ORGANS (e.g muscles or glands) ­ via MOTOR NEURON (away from brain)
Simple REFLEXES are relayed via the SPINAL CORD ­ without brain involvement
THE PNS all other nerves in the body including:
1. The SOMATIC NERVOUS SYSTEM : made of SENSORY and MOTOR neurons
2. The A UTONOMIC NERVOUS SYSTEM : controls INVOLUNTARY bodily functions such as digestion & heartbeat
ANS split into SYMPATHETIC and PARASYMPATHETIC
NEURONS AND SYNAPTIC TRANSMISSION
SENSORY neurons carry nerve impulses FROM sensory receptors TO the CNS
RELAY neurons CONNECT sensory & motor neurons and are found in CNS ­ also known as INTERNEURONS
MOTOR neurons long axons (connecting cell body & dendrites) carry nerve impulses TO muscles for CONTRACTION
The nerve impulse travels along the AXON in form of an electrical signal called ACTION POTENTIAL
Neurons RECEIVE a signal via a DENDRITE from other neurons or from SENSORY receptors and pass it on via the AXON
The AXON is covered in an insulating layer called the MYELIN SHEATH (this allows nerve impulses to travel along it faster)
SYNAPTIC TRANSMISSION
The nerve impulse crosses the synaptic gap between the PRESYNAPTIC and the POSTSYNAPTIC neuron with the help of
NEUROTRANSMITTERS
The arrival of an action potential at the end of the axon & the OPENING OF CALCIUM CHANNELS triggers the release of
neurotransmitters from VESICLES into the synaptic CLEFT (gap) via EXOCYTOSIS (pinched off of the end of the synapse in
simpler terms)
These neurotransmitters molecules DIFFUSE across the gap and bind to the complementary RECEPTORS in the MEMBRANE of
the postsynaptic neuron ­ this triggers a NEW action potential.
Leftover neurotransmitters are removed from the gap by A) reuptake into presynaptic neuron OR B) breakdown of enzymes
Some drugs, for e.g SSRI's affect the RATE of reuptake or breakdown of neurotransmitters

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EXCITATORY and INHIBITORY NEUROTRANSMITTERS
Neurotransmitters can have different effects when they BIND to the receptor on the postsynaptic neuron
The TOTAL effect determines whether an impulse is produced in the next neuron
Excitatory neurotransmitters cause an `excitatory postsynaptic potential' ­ LIKELY TO FIRE e.g NORADRENALINE
Inhibitory neurotransmitters cause an `inhibitory postsynaptic potential' ­ LESS LIKELY TO FIRE e.…read more

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