NEW335H1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Insular Cortex, Cingulate Cortex, Orbitofrontal Cortex

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27 Aug 2016
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NEW335 Lec 4_Meditation and Neuroplasticity-Part 1
*What is neuroplasticity? A change in the structure and/or function of neurons or neuronal networks.
*Neuroplasticity also changes in non-neuronal cells/tissues (e.g. glial cells and vasculature).
-Neuroplasticity affects many neurons, and if enough neurons are affected, gross brain structure
changes, and may change behavioral function in a major way.
-Certain neurons more likely to change depending on the stimuli. (e.g. Chronic stress often affects
neurons in the hippocampus and amygdala.)
**How do we measure Neuroplasticity: MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging)
*Problems in studies of meditation-induced neuroplasticity?
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-Many different types of neurons differ in their plasticity.
-Plasticity is Not restricted phenomena.
-Not all neuroplasticity is desirable: trauma.
-Brain is a multicellular organ.
-We need to know basic anatomy of the Brain.
-In CNS”
-Nucleus: bundle of cells: gray matter: cell bodies: outer layer, cortex( explain our higher-order
behavioiurs).
-Tract: Bundle of axons: white matter, inner layer, subcortex
-Four lobes (spatial and functional division of brain): Frontal, Parietal, Occipital, Temporal.
-Broadmann map (functional organization of the brain.)
-Three axis:
1. Dorsal (top, superior), Ventral (Bottom, inferior)
2. Rostral (front, anterior), Caudal (back, posterior)
3. Lateral (outer), Medial (closer to interior)
*Meditation-induced neuroplasticity is seen in many areas of the brain(*remember this list and table):
-Rostrolateral prefrontal cortex, orbitofrontal cortex, cingulate cortex, somatomotor/somatosensory
cortex, insular cortex, interior/fusiform temporal gyrus, amygdala, hippocampus.
*The “Somatosensory cortex, Insular cortex, and Anterior cingulate”: are all exhibit meditation-induced
neuroplasticity, and are all involved in pain processing, and meditation increased size of these areas,
some meditators increased pain threshold and exhibits reduced pain-related activity.
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