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Lecture 1 - Introducing Biological Psychology

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Ayesha Khan

PSY290H5S – Introduction to Physiological Psychology Lecture 1 – July 10, 2013 Introduction to Biological Psychology Recall from last lecture: - What brings about the level of consciousness? - What makes you aware of your surroundings? - We have sophisticated technology to see activation in the brain - We don’t have to have a verbal response from someone to asses that they are conscious because we can look at brain activity o You can go inside the brain and actually ask them, image playing tennis, and that part of the brain (frontal cortex) associated with thinking of playing tennis o Then you can watch activity in that area - Technology helps figure out if there is technology in a region associated with a particular function Introduction for today’s lecture: - Neuropsychology is advancing to be able to answer the question what is really going on? And to what extent is the damage present? - Biological psychology is a really complicated field o Involves biochemistry, physics, math  draws on a variety of disciplines - We want to be able to biopsychology to look at behaviour from a lot of different perspective - Behaviour is not just see, movement, verbal responses, but also observe activity in the brain through a scanner - What biological tissue helps us to attend, solve problems, exhibit complex behviour, and where is it located? o Somewhere in the body, there is a tissue associated with behaviour Prehistoric Brain Surgery: Trephining - If someone was acting abnormally (behaving outside of societal norms), brain surgery would occur o Drilling into the skull and having the bad spirit escape - Suggests that behaviour has some sort of code and ethic where something is not right Ancient Views of the Nervous System - Ancient Treatment o Stone Age: trephining (drilling a hole in a skull) - Edwin Smith paprus o 16 Century B.C.E o Treatment of diseases & behavioural disorders, and surgical procedures o This is the first time where the Brain is described and the association of the brain and mental function – by paralysis o When we think about the nervous system (in terms of early writings), we think of body movement PSY290H5S – Introduction to Physiological Psychology Lecture 1 – July 10, 2013 Aristotle (284-322BC)  Mentalism - Started a formal theory about behaviour o In particular, What controls behaviour? - Thought about the concept of the human psyche: something you cant see and cant measure - *Started to think about mentalism, where something inside me controls my behaviour o Where? According to Aristotle, it must be the heart o Why? According to Aristotle, there is a lot of changes that occur to the heart when you are nervous, scared, calm. Galen (circa AD 129-199) - Started to think about (in terms of mental experiences), where the mental experiences resides o Aristotle put forward a Cardiac hypotheses (mental experiences are coming from the heart)  Galen didn’t agree with this - Galen started to look at the cavities that existed in the brain  ventricles o Said that all these connections of tubes all end up in these specific cavities which makes everyone unique - Idea that the nervous system is a series of interconnected tubes o Anatomy became very important because this helped to start getting a glimpse of the body Andreas Vesalius (1514-1564) - Father of Modern Anatomy (perspective of Neuron Science) - Started to dissect brain and draw out in detail the body and the brain - Helped us start to realize that there are interconnections (through drawings) Rene Descartes (1596-1650)  Dualism - Thought about, “What controls our movement?” - The Reflex According to Descartes o Reflex is an uncontrollable stimulus response o Illustration is showing that your foot goes near the fire, your first quickly responds and removes from that area quickly o We can explain behaviour purely on reflexive - Formally talked about Dualism o There is something nonmaterial inside of us that controls the material the soul o Then there is the actual material, the human body o Mind is an immaterial entity associated with the pineal gland PSY290H5S – Introduction to Physiological Psychology Lecture 1 – July 10, 2013 o Pineal gland has the ability to cause movement of fluids in the body (water, body), and produce changes in our behaviour - Mind-Body Problem o Physicists questions o How does the mind (if its immaterial) bring about change in fluids and behaviour? As you need energy to move the body in somewhere? o So how does an immaterial spontaneous get this energy? Charles Darwin (1809-1892) - Thought about how the environment that shapes the behaviours that we experience - Tracked at commonalities and differences between animals o Example: kind of fur, kind of body coloration that might exists o Looked at phylogenetic trees that documented similarities and differences - Given the environment that one lives in, the importance’s are: o (1) Survival o (2) Reproduction - Example: Most people have either a fear associated with height. Why is that the case? If we go back thousands of years, ancestors were walking on big cliffs, people look over the edge and fall or choose not to step over the edge o Fear of height is really adaptive - Genetic code: o Genes can also code behaviour Alfred R. Wallace (1823-1913) - Worked with Darwin - (Same information that was written for Charles Darwin) Luigi Galvani (1737-1798): The Electrical Nature of Neural Communication - “What governs behaviour from a mechanistics perspective?” - He connected a wire to the top of his roof that connects to frog legs - He notices that the current of the lightening made the frog legs move Santiago Ramon y Cajal (1852-1934): The Neuron Doctrine - The idea that you have a series of different cells that are independent, yet are working together - Important because around the time Cajal was doing his work, Golgi was also really important o He created a staining technique that helped view cells under a microscope o According to Golgi, the nervous system is one huge cells o Cajal says “no”, they are separate cells - The Neuron Doctrine o Staining techniques showed that yes there is independent cells, but they are also interconnectivity PSY290H5S – Introduction to Physiological Psychology Lecture 1 – July 10, 2013 Ida Hyde (1857-1945) - The first women to be elected in the American Psychological Society - She created the first microelectrode o *Micro = small, electrode= electricity o Having this tool, meant that you can go to the cellular level, and introduce electricity, and see what the consequence of that - Now we have these microelectrodes, where we can see how these cells are functioning Phernology - Late 1700s, early 1800s and we go into a macro perspective - They advance the field of phernology - Two key assumptions: o (1) Different regions of the brain perform different functions o (2) You could have distortions (bumps) of the skull that are different between people. And these distortions correlate to different personalities - Helped modern neuroscience think about the brain and their different regions that are also associated with different aspects of behaviour Paul Broca’s Area - Damage on the frontal cortex - Deficit = the tissue in that area was dead (no longer functioning) - The person had difficulty getting words out o The front part of the brain is associated with motor movement - Strict localization o One particular of the brain does one function and nothing else o People started to put forward this idea, and associated the example of Broca’s area as evidence o (it is not true…) Wernicke’s Area - Noticed there is damage in the left temporal cortex o Affected the organization of words o The ability to express yourself tends to deteriorate - Interconnection, does it exist? Yes PSY290H5S – Introduction to Physiological Psychology Lecture 1 – July 10, 2013 Wernicke’s Model - First people who put this model forward - Language is organized in the left hemisphere (L for left, language) o Temporal = getting words out o Frontal Cortex – Broca’s area = motor capacity to get words out - (1) Sound sensations enter the brain through the auditory pathway - (2) Sound images are stored in Wenicke’s area - Arcuate fasciculus is a pathway, and from there, synapses occurs in Broca’s area - (3) And are sent to Broca’s area - Aphasia = disruption - (4) for articulation over he motor pathway Wernicke’s Idea of Disconnection - Different regions of the brain have different functions - BUT, there is interdependence! - There is interaction! - Idea of disconnection o Alexia – disconnection between visual area (occipital cortex) of the Brain and Wenicke’s area  loses the ability to read o Apraxia – disconnection between the motor areas of the brain (frontal cortex) and the sensory areas of the brain (parietal cortex) Biological Psychology - Psychology – Study of behaviour - Biological Psychology – Connection between human behaviour & brain - Influenced by variety of disciplines o Draw from anatomy, biology, ethics, pharmacology - Two aspects: o Brain Hypothesis – the brain, and nervous system is a source of behaviour o Neuron Hypothesis- mechanistic view point: neurons are a unit of that are found in the nervous system and brain allow activity of behaviour to occur PSY290H5S – Introduction to Physiological Psychology Lecture 1 – July 10, 2013 The Brain - Brain made of two hemisphere: o Left hemisphere o Right hemisphere - Lobes: o Frontal lobe o Temporal lobe o Parietal lobe o Occipital lobe - Cortex – outer portion of the brain - Cerebral Cortex – outer layer of the brain - Cracks are Sulci and Bumps in the brain are Gyri The Neuron Hypothesis - Unit of brain structure  unit of nervous system - Nerve cell found where the nervous system is (which is all over the body) - Interaction without physical connection o Electrical and chemical signals that allow for communication to exist within neurons o Communication is chemical between neurons Nervous System - Central Nervous System o Brain and spinal cord - Somatic Nervous System o Cranial nerves and spinal nerves - Autonomic Nervous System o Sympathetic division – flight or fight responses, gets your out of a danger situation quickly, impact breathing rate, dilating pupils… o Parasympathetic division – resting ad digestion system PSY290H5S – Introduction to Physiological Psychology Lecture 1 – July 10, 2013 Brain: Hierarchical Organization - Reptilian o Breathing, heart rate, organization of space o We share the organization of the brain shared with reptiles - Limbic System o Subcortical structures o Limbic system is associated with emotional o Share with lower mammals, dogs, cats, wolves, elephants - Neo-Cortex o Neo = “new” in evolutionary history o Shared with monkeys, chimpanzees, gorillas (but humans have more) o Have more complex behaviour (ie ability to time
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