Lec7ANeurons%26BrainPlasticity

Lec7ANeurons%26BrainPlasticity - Lecture 7(2/10/09): How...

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Lecture 7(2/10/09): How drugs work, brain plasticity How drugs alter neurons Reading the brain: video Cog. Enhancing drug issues (in brief) Brain plasticity: Across generations Developmental Experiential
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Psychological context for understanding neurons All psychological phenomena involve the operation of neurons Change neurons then you change thought, mood, and action Stop neurons then you stop though, mood, and action Visualization techniques show neurons at work as we perceive and think Test of these points: Drug effects Hooking up a machine to neuronal activity
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Summary: 1. Neurons can “talk” in a binary code: -70 mv and + 30 mv, equivalent to “0” and “1.” 2. They can communicate with one another: release and binding of neurotransmitters. 3. The simplicity of the language is in sharp contrast to the incredible complexity of the neural connections. a. Perhaps 100 billion neurons b. Each neuron has many input nodes and many output nodes. c. These work in parallel and in sequence. The brain has immense coding and communication capacities. At its disposal is a simple two word vocabulary (- 70 mv and +30 mv), a finite number of neurotransmitters, and an unlimited capacity to create networks composed of neurons and neurotransmitters.
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An implication of neuronal functioning relating to psychoactive drugs… Neurons provide the physical bases for psychological phenomena Neurons are biological and communicate by means of biochemicals Drugs interact with biological structures Hence, drugs can alter neurons, thereby altering psychological phenomena Each feature of neuronal functioning is an opportunity for intervention Thus, drugs alter psychological phenomena by interacting with specific features of neuronal function and communication
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How drugs work (1) Drugs that influence synthesis and storage of neurotransmitters: L-Dopa: synthesis of dopamine to treat Parkinson’s
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Lec7ANeurons%26BrainPlasticity - Lecture 7(2/10/09): How...

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