116 Lecture 8.S10

116 Lecture 8.S10 - CBNS 116 Lecture 8 - Brainstem II:...

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CBNS 116 Lecture 8 - Brainstem II: Internal structures, reticular formation, “juice machines”, and blood supply Lecture notes by Todd Fiacco ASSIGNMENT: Read Nolte Chapter 11: “Organization of the brainstem”. FOR NEXT LECTURE: Read Nolte Chapter 12: “Cranial nerves and their nuclei”. Note that Nolte covers the cranial nerves for special senses in separate chapters; these I have condensed considerably in the lecture notes and have not assigned these chapters to read. TODAY'S LECTURE: The big picture : In this lecture we examine in more detail the brainstem structures and circuits that are tied closely to survival, which includes the reticular formation and “related structures”. The reticular formation is probably the most complicated single structure that you will learn about in this course. It is that part of the brainstem tegmentum gray matter that appears to be diffusely organized, not forming clearly demarcated nuclei using conventional staining methods. It’s cells receive information from a wide variety of sources, and also project to a large number of areas in both the brain and spinal cord. The cells of the reticular formation must receive inputs from numerous sources when you consider its multiple survival functions. These include control of alertness and attention, consciousness, autonomic reflexes, respiratory reflexes, pain modulation, and regulation of heart rate and blood pressure. As you will learn, the reticular formation is also involved in complex motor reflexes. Because of the role the reticular formation plays in autonomic reflexes, it is clear that this area must closely interact with parasympathetic cranial nerves (mainly IX & X), spinal sympathetic ganglia, and the hypothalamus. The “related structures” of the reticular formation include the central tegmental tract , periaqueductal gray , and the brainstem “juice machines”, specific areas within the reticular formation that produce and release specific neuromodulatory neurotransmitters that project widely throughout cerebral cortex. I. General organization of the reticular formation [slides 23 - 25]. Despite its diffuse nature, the reticular formation can be broken down into functional zones: A. The brainstem reticular formation can be divided into three longitudinal zones arranged in a medial to lateral sequence:
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1) The raphe nuclei (from the Greek rhaphe , meaning “seam”), are small nuclei that closely “hug” the midline seam of the brainstem. These cells produce and release serotonin and are therefore one of the widespread projecting neurotransmitter systems of the brainstem; 2) The medial zone , the source of most long ascending and descending projections from the reticular formation; 3) The lateral zone
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This note was uploaded on 10/31/2010 for the course CBNS 116 taught by Professor Todda.fiacco during the Spring '10 term at UC Riverside.

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116 Lecture 8.S10 - CBNS 116 Lecture 8 - Brainstem II:...

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