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Neuroscience. Chapter 2. I. Parts of the Brain. The Lobes – divide the brain into 4 major sections by fissures Frontal Lobe – area of the brain associated with higher mental abilities, movement, personality and the sense of smell

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Chapter 2

I. Parts of the Brain

  • The Lobes – divide the brain into 4 major sections by fissures

    • Frontal Lobe – area of the brain associated with higher mental abilities, movement, personality and the sense of smell

      • Contains the Motor Strip – portion of the brain that controls body movement – can be stimulated through electrical impulse

        • Importance to the body denotes designation of space in the MS

      • Frontal Association Area

        • Interprets & evaluates your environment – what is going on, what to feel, makes sense of things going on around you

        • Size reflects intelligence

        • Damage to this portion can create serious problems with a persons personality (inappropriate emotions, socially unacceptable behavior, fewer inhibitions, failure to make long-term plans, easily distracted, difficulty understanding a string of facts or events)

The Lobes Cont.

  • Parietal Lobe – Portion of the brain where body sensations register (touch, temperature, pressure etc)

    • Contains the Sensory Strip – provides and registers sensation

  • Occipital Lobes – responsible for processing and interpreting visual information

    • When damaged it effects what and how well a person can see

  • Temporal Lobe – contains centers for hearing and some language functions

B. The Hemispheres

  • Hemispheres – The sides of the brain divided by a large lengthwise fissure, both hemispheres work together on most tasks

  • Corpus Callosum– connects and allows for communication between the right and left hemisphere

    • When this is cut most communication between the 2 halves is cut off

  • Dominance – this is the side of the brain that is preferred over the other

    • The hemisphere that is dominant controls most actions and fine motor skills

    • If you are left handed you are right brain dominant etc

Hemispheres cont.

  • Left Hemisphere Tasks – local view

    • Handles verbal and speech material, like encoding and syntax some logic and writing, superior at judging time, math, rhythm & coordinating complex movements like those associated with speech

    • Mainly involved in analysis and processing information sequentially

  • Right Hemisphere Tasks – global view

    • Can produce only basic speech and numbers

    • Deals with objects in space, recognizing patterns, faces, and melodies, putting together a puzzle and drawing a picture, some mathematical reasoning

    • Helps express emotions and detect emotions of others

    • Chances are these people will be better at nonverbal activities, specializes in imagery

    • Processes material simultaneously and holistically

C. The Cerebrum and the Cerebral Cortex

  • The outermost layer of the brain – the gray matter

  • Includes hemispheres, lobes and the frontal association area

  • Controls very high-level thought and takes up 2/3rds of the brains nerve cells (100 billion)

  • Responsible for voluntary movements, sensations, learning, remembering, consciousness etc.

  • Corticalization – the increase in the size and wrinkles of the brain

    • small correlation between brain size and intelligence (not between humans & humans but humans and other animals)

D. The Lower Brain

  • The Lower Brain - communicates back and forth with the cerebral cortex for non-automatic human responses

  • The Thalamus – acts as a sensory relay station sending and receiving information to other parts of the brain (vision, hearing, taste & touch) damage can cause blindness, deafness, etc (not smell)

  • The Cerebellum – primarily regulates posture, muscle tone & muscular coordination

    • Stores memories related to skills and habits (class schedules, driving directions)

    • Damage – walking, running, playing catch are impossible, area of the brain where degenerative diseases effect coordinated motor function

The Lower Brain Cont.

  • The Hypothalamus – control center for emotions and basic motives - helps control rage, pleasure, hunger and sexual desire, temperature control

  • Reticular Activating System – works to catch nerve impulses from the brain to the body and back

    • Affects your alertness, sorts & prioritizes nerve impulses, controls reflexes involved in breathing, sneezing, coughing, and vomiting, and affects muscle tone, posture, and movement of the head, eyes, face & body

    • Bombards the cortex with stimulation keeping it active and alert

II. Brain Communication

A. Neuron – the nerve cell of the brain

  • Dendrite – short fibers that act as receptors, receiving messages from other nerve cells

  • Axon – longer fiber that carries messages from the cell to other neurons

    B. Synapse – space between the axon of one neuron and the dendrite of another neuron

  • Vesicle – bubble like containers that hold chemical molecules called neurotransmitters

Brain Communication cont.

C. Neurotransmitters – send messages over the synapse to the dendrite receptor

  • Acetylcholine – type of neurotransmitter that affects body movements (food poisoning)

  • Dopamine – neurotransmitters involved in the control of body movements (Parkinson’s disease)

  • Endorphins – neurotransmitter that relieves pain and increases your sense of well-being (ecstasy & other drugs)

C. The Spinal Cord

  • The neurons in the spinal cord are short, direct and powerful.

  • have few synapses – shorter time for information to be received and an action to occur

  • reflex – activation of the muscle(s) before the message is received by the brain (dropping a baby)

III. The Endocrine System

  • The Pituitary Gland – small bean shaped gland attached to and controlled by the hypothalamus

    • Responsible for sending messages to other glands to activate them

    • Responsible for determining the height of the person

    • The gland creates a growth hormone which appears in the body’s system sporadically resulting in on and off growth spurts

    • Can be effected by the environment and diet of the individual

  • Thyroid Gland – located in the neck this gland controls a persons metabolism

    • This affects the rate a which a person’s body operate, inactive thyroid = a sluggish person, a overactive thyroid = jumpy and hyper person

III. The Endocrine System cont.

  • The Adrenal Gland – located on the right and left side of the body above the kidneys

    • Responsible for putting adrenaline in to the bloodstream

      • Affects us by increasing breathing, blood pressure, muscles tension & energy level

    • Will also release a chemical that allows for the faster clotting of blood

    • This happens during testing or any other high anxiety time (fight or flight reaction)

      • TIP: to decrease test anxiety force yourself to take slow deep breaths, this will stimulate brain activity instead of shutting it down to prepare for an emergency

III. The Endocrine System cont.

  • The Gonads – sex glands located in the testis in males and the ovaries in females

    • Androgen – the male hormone that stimulates the growth of hair, the deepening of the voice and the production of sperm

      • Starts the sex drive of both males and females

      • Sex drive is taken over by the cortex which allows us to associate other emotions like love and caring with the act of intercourse

    • Estrogen – the female hormone that causes the production of eggs the enlargement of the mammary glands and the menstrual cycle to begin

      • Both of these hormones are produced in the gonads and released during the middle teenage years

IV. The Nervous System

  • The nervous system is our body’s electro-chemical information network (interstate highway)

  • Central Nervous system – includes our brain and spinal cord

  • Peripheral Nervous system – links the CNS with the body’s sense receptors, muscles and glands.

    • Axons – are grouped & bundled as cables that shoot messages back and forth along our nerves

  • Types of Neurons

    • Sensory neurons - gather and send info to the CNS

    • Motor Neurons – sends messages from the CNS to the body’s tissues and muscles

    • Inter Neurons – communicate between the sensory neurons and motor neurons

    Peripheral Nervous System

    • Somatic Nervous System -

    • Autonomatic Nervous System –

      • Sympathetic –

      • Parasympathetic -

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