Chapter 18 Outline

Chapter 18 Outline - Chapter 18 Neural Circuits and Memory...

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Chapter 18 Neural Circuits and Memory Formation Can be simple: monosynaptic reflex arc (Ex. knee jerk reflex). These can still be plastic, however. More complex: superordinate circuits/modulatory circuits. The spinal activity in these is controlled by higher order circuits in the brain. (Ex. brainstem, basal ganglia, motor cortex) Cell assemblies: complex networks of neurons assist in learning. o Neurons by themselves may not affect learning, but their combined effects can. Physiological Changes and Memory Storage Can be presynaptic, postsynaptic or both. Examples of changes INCREASING activation: o More transmitter release from presynaptic neuron. o Less transmitter release, but more postsynaptic sensitivity o More transmitter release AND more sensitivity o Interneuron also releases transmitter, increasing overall transmitter release.
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o More synapses formed, more transmitter released. o Synapses rearranged, more transmitter released. Examples of changes DECREASING activation: o More reuptake of neurotransmitters o More enzymatic degradation of neurotransmitters The Hebbian Synapse Neuron “A” excites Neuron “B” frequently. “A” becomes more efficient at exciting “B”. Grows stronger when the synapse is active AND effective at getting postsynaptic cell to fire. “Neurons that fire together wire together” Dual-trace hypothesis: Newly learned material first echoes throughout neural circuits, which helps “hold” it for a short period of time. This can then lead to a long lasting memory of the material.
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