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Week 3 Notes: Brain Structure and Function

by: Chandler Notetaker

Week 3 Notes: Brain Structure and Function PSYCH 1101

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Chandler Notetaker

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These notes talk about the brain's structure, functions and things you shouold know about the brain
Introduction to Psychology
Pizarro, D
Class Notes
brain, structure
25 ?




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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Chandler Notetaker on Friday September 16, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYCH 1101 at Cornell University taught by Pizarro, D in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 12 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Psychology in Psychology at Cornell University.


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Date Created: 09/16/16
9/9/16­ The Brain Part 3: Brain Structure and Function  ➔ A Few Kinds of Neurotransmitters   ◆ Serotonin:​ plays an important role in regulating mood, sleep, impulsivity,  aggression, and appetite   ◆ Norepinephrine​: affects eating habits (stimulating the intake of carbohydrates)  and play major role in alert and wakefulness  ◆ GABA( gamma­aminobutyric acid​): main inhibitory transmitter in the brain  ● Can cause seizures   ● Alcohol and benzodiazepines work in part by acting on this chemical   ◆ Endorphins​: relief from pain or stress of vigorous exercise and produce feelings of  pleasure and well being  ➔ How drugs Affect Neurotransmitters  ◆ Many drugs act by influencing in numerous ways   ● An agonist is a chemical that binds to a receptor and activates the receptor to  produce a biological response.  ● An antagonist is a substance that interferes with or inhibits the  physiological action of another.  ◆ Influences chemical precursors of a transmitter substance  ◆ Prevent storage of the transmitter in vesicles  ◆ Inhibit or stimulate the release of transmitter substance   ◆ Bloc postsynaptic receptors  ◆ Block reuptake of free flowing transmitter substance   ➔ Example: Dopamine, Disease, And Drugs  ◆ Cocaine and amphetamines Increase levels of dopamine. Some hypothetical situations   ● Crystal meth a week straight? Dopamine boosted highest level=​ Amphetamine  psychosis  ○ Amphetamine psychosis is patient is experiencing delusions and  hallucinations   ● Has not touched crystal meth, BUT still having delusions and hallucinations=  Schizophrenia   ○ Schizophrenia is ​A brain disorder in which people interpret reality  abnormally.  ○ Schizophrenia can be improved by the use of drugs that reduce dopamine   ● BUT not enough dopamine and you might get​ tardive dyskinesia   ○ Tardive dyskinesia is the uncontrollable bodily movement­ twitching and  shaking)   ● Having uncontrollable bodily movement but you didn't take the dopamine­reducing  drugs? Could possibly be Parkinson’s   ○ Parkinson's Disease​ is ​A disorder of the central nervous system that  affects movement, often including tremors.  ○ Parkinson’s Disease can be treated by increasing the levels of dopamine  in your brain, bringing your body to a temporary rest  ➔ Structure and Function  ◆ For Some Things, We Don't Even Need Our Brain  ● Some reflexes don't need to go through the brain  ○ Sucking in newborns  ○ Limb flexion in withdrawal from pain  ○ Erections  ◆ The Mammalian Brain  ●   ➔ Why These Brains are Oversimplified   ◆ Even the smallest brain structures are incredibly complex, contain structures that we have  not captured  ◆ Although people discuss the functions of various brain structures, the brain is based on  connections­ the important is based on the interconnections  ◆ On top of that, the brain can recognize ITSELF= plasticity  ● Plasticithe adaptability of an organism to changes in its environment or  differences between its various habitats.  ➔ Localization v Plasticity  ◆ Neuroplasticity:​ Changes in physical structure ad functional organization of the  brain due to experience   ● Learning (neurons that fire together= wire together)  ● Remapping of sensory cortex  ● Brain damage  ● Can be positive or negative   ◆ Localization​: The idea that different parts of the ​brain​ do different things.   ➔ Subcortical Structures   ◆ Medulla:   ● Autonomic functions: autonomic​ nervous system is a control system  that acts largely unconsciously and regulates bodily ​functions   ○ Heartbeat, breathing, blood pressure, swallowing, vomiting  ◆ Cerebellum​: Complicated skilled motor movements  ● Mental and sensory tasks; autonomation of many tasks  ◆ Hypothalamus​: Hunger, thirst, sleep, body temp, regulatory component that  performs homeostatic functions   ➔ The Cortex: NEED TO KNOW THIS  ◆   ➔   Cortical Area  Function  Prefrontal Cortex  Problem Solving, Emotion, Complex  Thought  Motor Association Cortex  Coordination of complex movement  Primary Motor Cortex  Initiation of optional  movement  Primary Somatosensory Cortex  Receives tangible  information from the  body  Sensory Association Area  Processing of multisensory information  Visual Association Area  Complex processing of visual information  Visual Cortex  Detection of simple visual stimuli  Wernicke's Area  Language comprehension  Auditory Association Area  Complex processing of auditory  information  Auditory Cortex  Detection of sound quality (loudness, tone)  Broca's Area  Speech production and articulation    ➔ Structures Preserved Over Evolution  ◆   ➔ Motor and Sensory Cortex  ◆   ● Motor Cortex  ○ Located in cerebral cortex  ○ Apart of Frontal lobe that involves planning, control, and execution  of optional movement  ○ Primary motor cortex is the main contributor to generating neural  impulses that pass down to the spinal cord and control the execution  of movement  ○ The primary somatosensory cortex,considered to be functionally part  of the motor control circ itry. ● Sensory Cortex (see above in the cortex) 


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