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PSYC1101_Biology_I - Neurons and Neuronal Communication...

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Neurons and Neuronal Communication Outline 5/24/10 I. The Human Brain a. 3-4 pounds b. Responsible for all complex behavior c. Composed of two main types of cells i. Neurons ii. Glia d. Between 100 billion and 1 trillion neurons II. Neurons- The most basic unit of the nervous system. (smallest unit spoken about in nervous system; come together to form systems) Three Main Types a. Sensory Neurons i. Detect information from the physical world and direct it to the brain ii. Afferent Neurons (Carry information to the brain) b. Motor Neurons i. Direct muscles to contract or relax ii. Efferent Neurons (Transmit signals from the brain) c. Interneurons i. Interconnect neurons within local or short distance circuits III. Structure of a Neuron a. Dendrites i. Detect information from other neurons b. Cell Body i. Information from other neurons is collected and integrated c. Axon i. Transmits signals away from the cell body in the form of a neural impulse (action potential) d. Nodes of Ranvier i. Gaps of exposed axon where action potentials are transmitted e. Myelin Sheath i. Insulates axon for rapid transmission of electrical impulse
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f. Axon Terminals (Terminal Buttons) i. Release chemical signals from the neuron to the synapse g. Synapse i. Site for communication between neurons ii. Extracellular fluid IV. Glial Cells – Support system for the nervous system. Three Main Functions a. Structural support: maintaining different parts of the neuron and making sure they are functioning at a structural level b. Insulation for neurons (Myelination): enhancing signal transmission
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PSYC1101_Biology_I - Neurons and Neuronal Communication...

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