Psychch2 sum - Psychology Chapter 2 Summary AN OVERVIEW OF...

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Psychology Chapter 2 Summary AN OVERVIEW OF THE NERVOUS SYSTEM 2.1 How do all the parts of the nervous system relate to one another? The nervous system is a complex network of cells that carries information to and from all parts of the body. NEURONS AND NERVES: BUILDING THE NETWORK 2.2 What are neurons and nerves, and how do they work? The brain is made up of two types of cells, neurons and glial cells. Neurons have dendrites, which receive input, a soma or cell body, and axons that carry the neural message to other cells. Glial cells separate, support, and insulate the neurons from each other and make up 90 percent of the brain. Myelin insulates and protects the axons of neurons that travel in the body. These axons bundle together in “cables” called nerves. Myelin also speeds up the neural message. Neurons in the peripheral nervous system are also coated with neurilemma, which allows the nerves to repair themselves. 2.3 How do neurons communicate with each other and with the body? A neuron contains charged particles called ions. When at rest, the neuron is negatively charged on the inside and positively charged on the outside. When stimulated, this reverses the charge by allowing positive sodium ions to enter the cell. This is the action potential. Neurons fire in an all-or-nothing manner. It is the speed and number of neurons firing that tell researchers the strength of the stimulus.
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Synaptic vesicles in the end of the axon terminal release neurotransmitter chemicals in to the synapse, or gap, between one cell and the next. The neurotransmitter molecules fit into receptor sites on the next cell, stimulating or inhibiting that cell’s firing. There are excitatory and inhibitory synapses. 2.4 What are the different neurotransmitters? The first known neurotransmitter was acetylcholine. It stimulates muscles and helps in memory formation. Curare is a poison that blocks its effect. GABA is the major inhibitory neurotransmitter; high amounts of GABA are released when drinking alcohol. Serotonin is associated with sleep, mood, and appetite. Dopamine is associated with Parkinson’s and schizophrenia. Endorphins are neural regulators that control our pain response. Most neurotransmitters are taken back into the synaptic vesicles in a process called reuptake. Acetylcholine is cleared out of the synapse by enzymes that break up the molecules. THE CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM—THE “CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT” 2.5 How do the brain and spinal cord interact? The central nervous system consists of the brain and the spinal cord.
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This note was uploaded on 10/23/2009 for the course PSYCH 101 taught by Professor Nahad during the Fall '07 term at Ivy Tech Community College.

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Psychch2 sum - Psychology Chapter 2 Summary AN OVERVIEW OF...

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