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Attention 2 - Neuroscience Methods

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PSYC 330
Richard Wright

2 - Neuroscience Methods & Attention January-15-13 8:31 AM • Lobes ○ Frontal  (Esp. Pre-frontal) area that controls attention processing; control centre for planning ○ Parietal  Can't use monkey's as efficiently, b/c we're not that similar  On anterior part, sematic sensory cortex --> process touch ○ Occipital: Visual area  Lots of work done with animals(we are similarto monkeys on occipital & temporal lobe) ○ Temporal  Most well known for Auditory area, but also involvedin visual processing among other things  e.g.,damage in this area --> deficit in processing spaces, even though you can see it • Animal research ○ Macaque (Rhesus monkey): smallbrain, not as convoluted, but with physical similarities I. Searching for brain locations of mental processes • Egyptians: did autopsy, so they had a sense of what damageon one side of braindoes to other side of body. Other than that, autopsy weren't commonly performed • 1800's: Gall's magnificent proposal ○ Explained why cortical layer isso convoluted --> it's to make brainmore dense and packed into small cranium ○ Grey & white matter: the cortex is only the greymatter (outer layer); white layeris the connective tissue (myelinated) ○ However, alsophrenology (lessmagnificent) --> brain size theories havebeen debunked. Differences between brains should be expected (likefingerprints).  Even scientists at the timerejected this, but it caught on with the laypeople (even government); sloweddown research to localizeb/c it was so ridiculous • Lashley (lesion methods) ○ Put lesions in different areas of rat brain, trying to systematicallydamage their abilitiesto work maze puzzle. Couldn't find memoryarea --> concluded that memory must be throughout brain (no specializedarea) ○ --> we now know that memory(likeother cog functions) are spread out. Perhaps Lashley managedto damage one but the others were still functional • 1900-fMRI: Backlash: pessimismabout cognitive localization ○ Peoplein the fieldwould dismissresearch/approaches in that area ○ BUT there is localization! (Broca: languageproduction area) • 1957: Singularcell recording ○ Got sensory area pretty accurate, but less so for the more cognitive things ○ All in all, not verylucky/welluntil fMRI II. The BrainNeural Electricity • ~1745: Leyden Jar: peopledon't reallyunderstand how electricityworks, but Leyden Jar stores electric charge (through static electricity) • Galvani's shocking discovery:that there is some for m of electricityinside animals/people The dead frog experiment. Let's ZAP THE FROG, and the leg moved. --> "the leg runs on ○ The dead frog experiment. Let's ZAP THE FROG, and the leg moved. --> "the leg runs on electricity?" (peopledidn't know about Neurons b/c Cajal didn't come along til 1800's) • Reviewtravellingof electric charge (ions), synapse, etc. • Mid 1900's: single cell recording propped up (for studying neural electricity) --> more studying of brains ○ Insert microelectrode into an area (where neuron might be). Active axons will cause change in electric charge (displayedon oscilloscope) ○ Will fireto stimuli the cellsare sensitiveto (e.g.,colour for colour/visual neurons) ; Action potentials are reallyquick (millisecond) ○ When monkey is paying attention to something, there is more firing of neurons in parietal lobe ○ Electricallystimulate an area to observe what reaction occurs • Combinemicro stimulation & singlecell recording: ○ Electricallystimulate FEF (eyemovement area) caused found changes in V4 (colour sensitive area) --> find which areas are associated/related ○ Systematicallybreaking down the complex system (liketaking parts of a car to see how it works) • Modern Lesion Method (chemical deactivation) ○ Reversible,so it's lessharmful; slows/inhibitsslowing down firing of AP ○ Previously,damaging an area that causes deficit in performance maynot mean it's the main area, could be just the bridgefor reaction --> less precise ○ Use2 or 3 different kinds of experiment to reciprocate data, makesit more accurate to overcome limitations ○ Will need animal to study areas reallydeep in the brain • 1920'
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