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Lec 7-9 Biological - C h a p te r 3 B io lo g ic a l A s p...

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Chapter 3: Biological Aspects of Psychology 1 Biological Psychology Study of the cells/organs of the body & the physical and chemical changes involved in behavior and mental processes The function of the nervous system Reductionism : The Neuron Moving up : Organization of the Nervous System The Plan Billions of cells – Brain – Spinal Cord – Other Nerve Fibers Processes info – Interprets, makes decisions, guides actions Nervous System
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Three Main Functions The Plan The function of the nervous system Reductionism : The Neuron Moving up : Organization of the Nervous System Cells of the Nervous System 2 major types – Neurons rapidly respond to and send signals – like highways – Glial Cells hold neurons together help neurons communicate – glial means “glue” Cleans up the mess What’s in a Neuron? Similar to other cells – Outer membrane • semipermeable – Cell body • Nucleus • Mitochondria
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• But…. Specialized features for communication – Axons – Myelin – Dendrites – Synapses What’s in a Neuron? What’s in a Neuron? Fibers that carry signals a way from the cell body Axons Myelin Fatty substance covering some axons that speeds up communication glial cells 12
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Dendrites Fibers that receive signals from axons and carry them to the cell body How do cells communicate Action Potential : A sudden wave of electrochemical change in the axon Synapse Gap between neurons – Signals transferred across gap via neurotransmitters (chemicals) Synapses Most common way info is transmitted between cells Small gap between end of axon and another cell’s dendrites
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Synapses Action Potential reaches end of the axon of presynaptic cell When AP gets to vesicles, they fuse to membrane Its neurotransmitters are released into synapse See Animations The Neuron: Who’s Who? AP AP I’m pre-synaptic! I’m post-synaptic! Nothing here but a synapse… Synapses Neurotransmitters move across the synapse Bind to receptors on postsynaptic cell – Receptor sites are neurotransmitter specific 19 How do cells communicate Action Potential : A sudden wave of electrochemical change in the axon
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Action Potentials Cells are usually polarized : – More negative inside + + + - - - - - Channels Welcome….
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