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Flashcards in Biopsychology Deck (82):
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Biopsycology

The study of the relationship between the brain and behavior. Sometimes referred to as neuroscience or neuropsychology.

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Nerve anatomy and physiology:

The basic structure and function of a nerve cell; sends neurochemical messages throughout the body

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Nerves

Cells which transmit messages throughout the nervous system
Make up approximately 10%of brain cells

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Sensory neurons

Receive stimuli
Transducer
Communicate to the brain

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Motor neurons

Communicate messages from the brain

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Inter neurons

Communicate within the CNS (brain and spinal cord)
Go between the sensory and motor neurons

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Glial cells

Support cells for neurons
Assist functions of neurons
Make up 90% of brain cells

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Cell body(soma)

Directs activity of the neuron
Contains neurons

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Dendrites:

Receive messages from neighboring neutrons
Contain the post- synaptic receptor sites
Send messages to the soma
Receive, potentially, messages from thousands of other neurons

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Axons

Carry messages from the soma to the terminal buttons
The action potential occurs here

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Myelin Sheath:

Surrounds the axon with isolation layer of glial cells
Keeps nerve signal from "short-circuiting"

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Nodes of Ranvier

Gaps in the myelin sheath
Promotes the action potential

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Terminal buttons

Aka axon terminals
Structures at the end of an axon
Contains synaptic vesicles

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Synaptic vesticles

Structures within terminal buttons
Produces and stores neurotransmitters

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Neurotransmitters

Aka neurochemicals
Chemical messengers produced by the neuron
Effects a myriad of human functions and experiences, including: vital functions, movement, emotions, emotions, cognition and states of consciousness.

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Acetylcholine

Learning Memory Muscle contraction
Too little: dementia, Alzheimer's
Too much:paralysis, convulsions

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Dopamine

Movement. aspects of cognition. moods
Too little: muscle tremors
Too much: hallucinations, delusions

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Endorphins

Pain relief; pleasure
Too little:stress, pain
Too much: euphoria opace addiction

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GABA

Lower brain activity (inhibition of neural activity)
Too little:anxiety; epilepsy
Too much: sedative state

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Glutamate

Increased brain activity(an excitatory neurotransmitter), memory formation
Too little: memory impairment
Too much: neurodegeneration, psychosis

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Serotonin

Levels of arousal( states of consciousness) mood & sleep & emotion
Too little: depression
Too much: mood disorders

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Substance P

Pain formation
Too little: pain insensitivity
Too much: pain stress

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Agonists

Psychoactive drugs which mimic a neurotransmitter, enhance the effect of the natural neurotransmitters

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Antagonists

Psychoactive drugs which inhibit the effect of a neurotransmitter

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Synaptic gap

Aka synapse
Area or GAO between the terminal buttons of one neuron and the receptor sites of a neighboring neuron

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Receptor sites

Located on the dendrites in the post synaptic area
Receive electrochemical signals (messages)

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Neurochemicals communication

Via afferent from the brain to the body via motor neurons and within CNS via interneurons

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Afferent

Sensory neurons

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Resting potential

The potential to produce and impulse
Involves negative and positive ions located near the inside and outside surfaces of the axon membrane

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Depolarization

A change in the resting potential
Involves exchange of positive and negative ions

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Stimulus threshold

Strength of stimulation necessary to effect depolarization

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All or none principle

Stimulation is sufficiently strong for a neuron to fire, or not

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Action potential

The effect of depolarization along the axon
Messages travel to the terminal button
Triggers the release of neurotransmitters

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Synaptic transmission

The release of neurotransmitters into the synaptic gap
Neurotransmitters bind to the receptor sites on the dendrites of the postsynaptic neurons

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Lock and key principle

The molecular configuration of each neurotransmitter is like a key which fits the receptor sites
Describes the dynamic of neuro chemical communication between neurons

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Re uptake

After the action potential, neurotransmitter molecules are absorbed into the presumptive neuron

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CNS

Major system within the nervous system which incorporates the brain and the spinal cord

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Cerebral cortex

Largest portion of the brain, higher thought processes including: perception, memory, cognition, language, emotion, decision- making, voluntary movement (everything human) includes localization and association areas, and left and right hemis each with four lobes

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Hemispheres:

The left and right halves of the cerebral cortex, each has specialized functions, operate contra laterally (left side controls right body & viceversa)

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Corpus callosum

Bundle of nerve fibers which connect the two hemispheres (communication)

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Temporal lobes

Located in left and right hemis of the cerebral cortex, process auditory stimuli

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Occipital lobes

a. include the visual cortex
b. processes light stimuli
c. functions contralaterally
d. abnormality involves ALEXIA ( which is dyslexia )

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Parietal lobes

Processes body sensations
Ex: Warmth, pain, pressure
Somatosensory cortex: are of parietal lobe, specific areas are dedicated to touch stimuli of the body

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Frontal lobes

Cognition
Control of emotions
Executive functioning: planning, organizing, initiation of action.
Motor cortex: next to somatosensory cortex, enables voluntary muscle control.
Brocas area: area of the left frontal lobe, controls the muscle movements involved with speech

44

Limbic system

The emotion center of the brain, main structure are hypothalamus, hippocampus and amygdala

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Hypothalamus

Hunger, thirst, sex drive, fear
Controls the autonomic nervous system links the nervous system with the endocrine system
Part of LIMBIC system

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Hippocampus

Essential for formation of long term memories part of LIMBIC system

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Amygdala

Fear central
Processes strong emotion
Interacts with hypothalamus & hippocampus to creat a flight/ fight response & to remember
Pt of LIMBIC

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Basal ganglia

Initiates movements, operant learning pt of LIMBIC

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Central core

Located on the top of the brain stem, just below the forebrain
Thalamus: relays signals between the central cortex and the brain stem, involved in memory alertness/ consciousness
Cerebellum: responsible for fine, integrated muscle movement, posture equilibrium, procedural/ muscle memory's

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Brain stem

Oldest in terms of evolution, top of spinal cord, maintains basic vital functions
Pons: bridge between both hemispheres of the cerebral cortex and the medulla and the cerebellum
Medulla oblongata: controls respiration, heartbeat and blood pressure
Reticular formation: on/ off switch and filter for incoming stimuli, network of neurons responsible for levels of arousal/ consciousness from awake to sleep

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Spinal cord

Main neural highway, extends from the base of the brain to the base of the back, compromised most of glial cells and inter neurons, conduit for most neural communication between the brain and the peripheral nervous system, where complex reflexes occur

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PNS:

Peripheral nervous system, links the CNS with the rest of the body
Somatic system: a. provides information to the brain regarding skeletal muscles b. stimulates voluntary muscle movement
2. Autonomic system: a. controls involuntary, automatic systems and organs, for example:
 heart
 intestines
b. Sympathetic system:
causes arousal responses, for example:
• increases heart rate
• concentrates blood from internal organs to muscles
• prepares for survival response
c. Parasympathetic system:
 counters the actions of the sympathetic system
 calms; seeks homeostasis

53

Endocrine system

System of glands which produces chemical messengers (hormones); hormones are secreted into the bloodstream where they carry there messages to receptor sites throughout the body

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Pituitary gland

1. Pituitary gland:
a. the “master gland”
b. secretes hormones which signal/activate the other glands
c. linked to the nervous system by the hypothalamus
d. stimulates growth
e. produces FSH (Follicle stimulating hormone)
 stimulates production of sperm and ova
f. produces LH (luteinizing hormone)
 stimulates ovaries
Part of endocrine system

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Pineal gland

Produces melatonin
Regulates sleep cycle (see states of consciousness)
Part of endocrine system

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Thyroid

Produces thyroxine
Regulates metabolism
In endocrine system

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Parathyroid:

Maintains calcium levels in the blood
Part of endocrine system

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Adrenal gland

Produces adrenaline (epinephrine)
Prepares for flight/ fight response
Norepinephrine
Cortisol : associated with stress
Part f the endocrine system

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Pancreas

Produces insulin and glucagon
Regulate blood-sugar level
Pt of endocrine system

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Ovaries produce

Estrogen: a reproductive hormone, activates development of secondary sex characteristics
Progesterone: maintains pregnancy
Part of endocrine system

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Testes

Produces Testosterone: a reproductive hormones, activates development of secondary sex characteristics

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Brain imaging techniques

1. EEG (electroencephalograph)
a. measures brain waves
2. CAT (computerized tomography)
a. use of X-rays to produce static pictures
3. PET (positron emission tomography)
a. radioactive glucose-like fluid injected into bloodstream
b. generates images of brain activity as it metabolizes the glucose
4. MRI/fMR (functional magnetic resonance imaging)
a. produces high-resolution images of the brain
5. DTI

63

Hippocrates

a. pre-socratic physician/philosopher
b. perceived illnesses as caused by physical sources

64

Plato

student of Socrates
Perceived the mind as located in the head

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Franz gall

a. German anatomist and physiologist
b. pioneered localization of brain function leading to theory of phrenology

66

Phones gage

a. Railroad worker from the 1800s
b. had a serious accident which impacted/altered personality
c. classic case study on the relationship between the brain and behavior

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Paul broca

a. French brain researcher
b. located an area in the left frontal lobe responsible for speech production

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Carl wernicke

a. German researcher
b. located the area in the left temporal lobe responsible for comprehending speech and reading

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Speedy and gazzaniga

a. Brain researchers in the area of split-brain research
b. led to a greater understanding of the unique functions of each of the cerebral hemispheres and
c. how the two hemispheres communicate with each other

70

Extra biophycologists

7. Ramon Cajal- founder of neurobiology, anatomy of nervous system & cells
8. William Penfield- from spokane, mental processes, surgeries, parts

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Behavioral genetics

Branch of biopsychology dealing with the relationship between behavior and genetics
- inherited traits vs. learned traits
Pt of behavioral genetics

72

Cell anatomy

 Nucleus
 Chromosomes
• DNA/RNA
• Genes
 Genotype:
 genetical make-up
 inherited factors
 Phenotype:
 observable characteristics
 the expression of genetic and non-genetic factors
• Chromosomal abnormalities
 Turner syndrome
 Klinefelter’s syndrome
 Down syndrome
Pt of behavioral genetics

73

Genetic research

a. Twin studies
 Identical:
• twins with identical genetic (Monozygotic) make-up provide an ideal study of the relationship between inherited traits
 both those reared together and
 those reared apart
 Fraternal:
• Dizygotic
b. Adoption Studies
c. Temperament Studies
d. Family Studies
3. Heritability/Hereditability

74

Evolutionary psychology

a. the branch of Biopsychology which evaluates any topic in psychology in light of the principles of:
 natural selection
 adaptation
 mutation
b. Sociobiology
 meme theory

75

Gender development

See development

76

Thalamus

relays signals between the central cortex and the brain stem, involved in memory alertness/ consciousness, part of central core

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Cerebellum

Muscle memory, part of central core

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pons

bridge between both hemispheres of the cerebral cortex and the medulla and the cerebellum, pt of brain stem

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Medulla oblongata

controls respiration, heartbeat and blood pressure
Part of brain stem

80

Reticular formation

on/ off switch and filter for incoming stimuli, network of neurons responsible for levels of arousal/ consciousness from awake to sleep, pt of brain stem

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Heredibility

Chances that differences between the population is due to genetics