Psyc A - week 3

What is a neuron?
Neuron's are the basic building block of the nervous system
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What is a soma?
The cell body
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What are dendrites?
Dendrites are specialising receiving units like antennae that collect messages from neighbouring neurons and the them on tho the cell body
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What is the axon?
The axon conduct electrical impulses away from the cell body to other neurons, muscles or glands
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What is the resting potential?
around 70millivolts
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What is the action potential?
The electrical shift, which lasts about a millisecond - nerve impulse -70 to +40 millivolts
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What is the absolute refractory period?
The membrane is not excitable and cannot discharge another impluse
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Describe the all-or-none law
Action potentials occur at a uniform and maximum intensity or they do not occur at all
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Describe graded potentials
Changes in the negative resting potential that do not reach -50 millivolt action potential threshold
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What is the myelin sheath?
a whitish, fatty insulation layer derived from glial cells during development
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What is the synaptic space?
A tiny gap between the axon terminal and the next neuron
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What are neurotransmitters?
Chemical substances that carry messages across the synaptic space to other neurons, muscles or glands
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What are synaptic vessels?
Chambers within the axon termianls
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What are receptor sites?
Large protein molecules embedded in the receiving neuron's cell membrane
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What is reuptake?
In which the trasnmitter molecules are taken back into the pre-synaptic axon terminals
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What is acetylcholine (ACh)?
a neurotransmitter involved in muscles activity and memory
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What are neuromodulators?
Have a more widespread and generalised influence on synaptic transmission
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What are psychoactive drugs?
Chemicals that produce alterations in consciousness, emotion and behaviour
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What are sensory neurons?
Carry input messages from the sense organs to the spinal cord and brain
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What are Motor neurons?
Transmit output impluses from the brain and spinal cord to the body's muscles and organs
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What are interneurons?
Perform connective or associative functions within the nervous system
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What is the peripheral nervous system?
Conatins all neural structures that lie outside of the brain and spinal cord
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What is the somatic nervous system?
Consists of sensory neurons that are specialised to transmit from the eyes, ears and other sensory receptors, an dmotor neurons that send messages from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles that control voluntary movements
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What is the automatic nervous system?
Which senses the body's internal functions and the controls the glands amd the smooth (involuntary) muscles that form the heart, the blood vessels an the lining of the stomach and intestines
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What is the sympathetic nervous system?
Has an activation or arousal function and it tends to act as a total unit
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What is the parasympathetic nervous system?
Is far more specific in its opposing actions, affecting one or a few organs at a time. In general, it slows the body down processes and maintains a state of tranquility
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What is homeostasis?
A delicately balanced or constant internal state
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What is the Enteric nervous system?
Is a unique system that acts exclusively on the gastrointestinal tract
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What is the central nervous system?
Contains the brain and spinal cord, which connects most parts of the peripheral nervous system with the brain
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What is (EEG) electroencephalograph?
measures the activity of large groups of neurons through a series of large electrodes placed on the scalp
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What is (CT or CAT) Computerised axial tomography?
Uses x-ray technology to study brain structures
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What is (MRI) Magnetic resonance imaging?
Creates images based on how atoms in living tissue respond to a magnetic pulse delivered by the device
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What is (PET scan) positron-emission tomography?
Measure brain activity, including metabolism, blood flow and neurotransmitter activity
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What is functional MRI?
Can produce pictures of blood flow in the brain taken within seconds of one another
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What is the cerebral cortex?
a 1/2 inch thick sheet of grey matter (unmyelinated) cells that form an outer layer of the human brain
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What is the motor cortex?
Controls the 600 or more muscles involved in voluntary body moevements
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What is the somatic sensory cortex?
Receives sensory input that contribute to our sensations of heat, touch and cold, and to our senses of balance and body movements
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What is the association cortex?
Constitutes most of the human cerebral cortex and is involved in many important mental functions, including perception, language and thought
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What is the prefrontal cortex?
Located in the forward section of the frontal lobe, is the seat of the so-called executive functions
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What is the thalamus?
Has sometimes been likened to a switchboard that organises inputs from sensory organs and routed them to the appropriate areas of the brain
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What is the hypothalamus?
Plays a major role in many aspects of motivation and emotion, including sexual behaviour, temperature regulations, sleeping, eating, drinking and aggression
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What is the limbic system?
Is involved in the processing of emotion, motivation and also learning and memory
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What is the hippcampus?
Is involved in forming and retrieving memories
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What is the amygdala?
Organises motivational and emotional response patterns, particularly those likend to aggression and fear
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What is the midbrain?
Contains clusters of sensory and motor neurons
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What is reticular formation?
Acts as a kind of sentry, both alerting higher centres of the brain that messages are coming and then either blocking those messages or allowing them to go forward
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What is the brain stem?
Supports vital life functions
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What is the medulla?
Plays an important role in vital bodily functions such as heart rate and respiration
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What is the cerebellum?
Is concerned primarily with muscle movement coordination and maintaining balance and posture
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What is the corpus callosum?
Is a broad band of white myelinated nerve fibres that connects the left and right cerebral hemispheres, aiding communication between the two halves of the brain
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What is lateralisation?
Refers to the realtivley greater localisation of a function in one hemisphere of the other
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Describe Wernicke's area
In the left temporal lobe, is primarily involved in speech comprehension
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Describe Broca's area
In the left frontall lobe, is mainly involved in the production of speech through its connections with the motor cortex region that controls the muscles used in speech
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What is aphasia?
The partial or total loss of the ability to communicate
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What is neural plasticity?
refers to the ability of neurons to change in structure and function
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What is neurogenisis?
The production of new neurons in the nervous system
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What are neural stem cells?
Immature 'uncommitted' cells that can mature into any type of neuron or glial cell needed by the brain
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What is the endocrine system?
Consist of numerous hormones-secreting glands distributed throughout the body
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What are hormones?
Chemical messengers that are secreted from its glands into the bloodstream
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What are the adrenal glands?
Twin structures perched a top the kidneys that serve, quite literally, as hormone factories, producing and secreting about 50 different hormones
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


What is a soma?


The cell body

Card 3


What are dendrites?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


What is the axon?


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


What is the resting potential?


Preview of the front of card 5
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