Lecture on October 31st: Neuroendocrinology

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University of Massachusetts Amherst
Psychology & Brain Sciences
Lori Astheimer Best

Behavioral Neuroscience, Lecture on October 31 st Neuroendocrinology: The study of the interactions between the nervous system and the endocrine system.  Interactions between the endocrine, immune and nervous system. Neuroendocrine tissue, Neuroendocrine glands are ductless.  Releases hormones directly into the blood stream.  Release hormones at lower levels than the synapse. Exocrine glands have ducts. Hypothalamus,  Secrete hormones such as dopamine Pineal gland,  Secretes melatonin. Thyroid,  Important in metabolism and energy control  Secretes thyroxine and triiodothyronine Pituitary gland,  Growth hormone, oxytocin, etc. Neuroendocrine mechanisms, Neurocrine = synaptic transmission. Neuroendocrine nervous tissue,  Rapid effects  Receptors  Targeted  Malleable  Can be long-term effects Hormones act on receptors,  Traditionally hormones are at lower concentrations compared to the concentrations you would find in a synapse.  Hormones typically have a high affinity for their receptors.  Can act on receptors by traveling long distances. Not all hormones are created equally! Typically lipophilic (direct translation = likes fats),  Has implications – can pass through the membrane.  Bind to receptors in the cytoplasm or in the nucleus. Can be hydropholic,  Acts on membrane receptors to initiate actions. Three main types of hormones, in terms of chemistry,  Amines (example, norepinephrine or dopamine).  Peptides/proteins (example, insulin or oxytocin).  Steroids (example, estradiol or testosterone). Amines: MOSTLY derived from the amino acid tyrosine, produced by the thyroid.  Epinephrine, norepinephrine and dopamine are the putative tyrosine
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