Behavioural Neuroscience 1 Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Behavioural Neuroscience 1 Deck (18):

Hippocrates 460 BCE

Proposed that the brain controls the body
Four bodily 'humours'/ 'spirits'
- Earth, Air, Fire, Water
Mental disorders are caused by an imbalance of these humours


Galen 130 CE

Nerves connect the brain to the body
Idea of pneumata (spirits)
- Natural (liver)
- Vital (heart)
- Animal (brain)
Thought that animal spirits travelled in hollow nerves (ventricles)


Andreas Vesalius 1514 CE

Structure of the brain is mapped in detail
Advanced knowledge of brain structure but not function


Descartes 1596

Interactions between mind and body
- Animals act reflexively whereas humans act voluntarily
- Link between physical brain and non-physical mind
- Proposed that animal spirits pass to and from the brain via hollow nerves (ventricles)
- Animal spirits in the brain are directed by the pineal gland


Thomas Willis 1621

Cerebral cortex v.s ventricles as seat of the mind
- Thought is generated by the outer tissue of the cerebral hemispheres (the cortex)
- Animal spirits are transported via the white matter


Luigi Galvani 1737

Electrical transmission v.s animal spirits
- Rejected the idea of animal spirits
- Nerves must be coated in fat to prevent electricity leaking out
- Electrical change applied to a frog's leg caused it to contract


Franz Joseph Gall 1758

The idea of a modular brain
- Introduced the notion of cortical localisation of function
- Phrenology: inferring people's psychological function through observation of their skull


Paul Broca 1861
Gustav Fritsh & Eduard Hitzig 1870

Localisation of Function
Paul Broca:
- Had a patient who was unable to speak due to damage to the left frontal lobe

Gustav Fritsh & Eduard Hitzig:
- Electrical stimulation experiments on dogs (frontal cortex) - inducing muscle contraction on the opposite side of the body
- specific parts of the motor cortex are devoted to the function of certain limbs


Egas Moniz 20th Century

The frontal lobes are linked to personality
-prefrontal leucotomy causing serious cognitive side effects such as apathy and disinhibition


How much does the brain weigh?

The adult brain weighs 1,400 grams (3% of body weight)


How much of the body's energy resources does the brain use?



physiological psychology

study of the effects of manipulations of the CNS on behaviour (e.g. effects of surgical lesions, electrical stimulation to the brain)



study of the effects of pharmacological substances (drugs) on behaviour (e.g. the effects of caffeine or nicotine on attention)



study of the effects of brain damage (lesions) on behaviour (e.g. the effects of stroke or head injury on learning and memory



study of the relationship between neuropsychological activity and behaviour (e.g. the pattern of electroencephalographic (EEG) activity associated with sleep and dreaming)


Cognitive neuroscience

study of the neural bases of cognition with particular emphasis on techniques of brain imaging (e.g. using functional magnetic resonance imaging to localise brain areas involved in reading words or perceiving faces)


Phineas Gage

due to his injury it was discovered that the frontal lobe is fundamental to who we are in terms of personality. Phineas's personality had completely changed and he was unable to make decisions or plan


Limitation of our knowledge of the brain

religious or moral views, limited methods, reliance on chance discoveries (serendipity), scientific conservatism (skepticism)