Psychology- Ch4

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What are graded potentials?
changes in the negative resting potential that do not reach the action potential threshold.
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Define neural plasticity
The ability of neurons to change in structure & function
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What is neurogenesis?
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. (could be used to repair the cells of those with brain injuries)
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What is the peripheral nervous system?
Contains all the neural structures that lie outside of the brain & spinal cord
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– Somatic Nervous System
a system of sensory and motor neurons that allow us to sense and respond to our environment.
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– Autonomic Nervous System:
a system that senses the body’s internal function and controls many glands and muscles. It has two subdivisions…
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==> Sympathetic:
activation or arousal function (e.g. fight or flight)
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==> Parasympathetic:
slows down the body; state of internal equilibrium
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What are the three types of neuron? describe them
Sensory -carry input messages from the sense organs to spinal cord & brain 2.Motor- transmit output impulses from the brain & spinal cord to the body’s muscles & organs. Intermediate-perform connective/associative functions within nervous system
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What is the endocrine system?
numerous hormone-secreting glands distributed throughout the body
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What are hormones?
chemical messengers that are secreted from the glands into the bloodstream. More slow and widespread than electrical. They are a way of communicating with lots of neurons across the board.
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What are adrenal glands?
twin structures that serve as hormone factories, producing and secreting about 50 different hormones • They produce several stress hormones as well as dopamine.
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What is lateralisation?
The relatively greater localization of a function in one hemisphere or the other. Left hemisphere
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What is an antagonist?
A drug that inhibits the action of a neurotransmitter
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What is an agonist?
A drug that increases the activity of a neurotransmitter
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What are psychoactive drugs?
Chemicals that produce alterations in consciousness, emotion and behaviour.
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Define neural plasticity


The ability of neurons to change in structure & function

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What is neurogenesis?


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What are neural stem cells?


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What is the peripheral nervous system?


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