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PSYC 211 - midtermnotes (chap 1,3,5,7,10,11).docx

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McGill University
PSYC 211
Yogita Chudasama

CHAPTER 1 : INTRODUCTION LECTURE 1  All moving objects were assumed to have spirits that acused them to move. As our ancestors became more sophisticated and learned more about nature, they abandoned this approach (called ANIMISM) in favor of physical explanations for inanimate moving objects, but they still used spirits to explain human behavior 1) Mind body question  Dualism is a belief in the dual nature of reality, mind and body are separate. The body is made of ordinary matter but the mind is not  Monism is a belief that everything in the universe consists of matter of energy and the mind is a phenomenon produced by the workings of the nervous system 2) Understanding human consciousness : a physiological approach  Consciousness refers to simple wakefulness. We humans are aware of our thoughts, perceptions, memories and feelings. We are aware of our own existence 3) Blindsight  Blindsight is the ability of a person who cannot see objects in his blind field to accurately reach for them while remaining unconscious of perceiving them. It is caused by a damage to the ‘’mammalian’ visual system of the brain  This ‘’mammalian’’ system is the one responsible for our ability to perceive the world around us. The ‘’primitive’’visual system is devoted to controlling eye movements and brining our attention to sudden movements that occur off to the side of our field of vision.  People can use the primitive visual system to guide hand movements toward an object even though they cannot see what they’re reaching for. So visual information can control behavior without producing a conscious sensation.  Only the mammalian visual system has direct connections with parts of brain responsible for consciousness. 4) Split brains  Surgical intervention used for people with severe epilepsy (nerve cells in one side of the brain become uncontrollably overactive and the over activity is transmitted to the other side of the brain.  Split brain operation: cutting the corpus callosum reduces the frequency of epileptic seizures  Only one hemisphere controls speech (left). The right hemisphere of an epileptic person with split brain appears able to understand instructions reasonably well but is totally incapable of producing speech  Example : patients may find themselves putting down a book held in left hand even if they have been reading it with great interest. This conflict occurs because the right hemisphere which controls the left han cannot read and therefore finds holding the book boring.  The olfactory system is an exception to the general rule of sensory information crosses from one side of the body to the opposite side of brain. Example : When a person sniffs a flower through left nostril, the left brain receives information of the odor. If the odor enters only the right nostril of a split brained patient, he will say that he smells nothing. 5) Unilateral neglect  A syndrome in which people ignore objects located toward their left and left sides of objects; damage to right parietal lobe  Example : Patients are asked to describe the Piazza Del Duomo, the patients duly named the buildings but only those on the west, to their right. The investigators then asked them to imagine themselves at the south end of the piazza and they naed the buildings on the east (to their right again) 6) Perception of self  Rubber hand illusion : Normal subjects were positioned with their left hand hidden out of sight. They saw a lifelike rubber left hand in front of them. The experimenters stroked both the subject’s hidden left hand and visible rubber hand with a small paintbrush. If the subject’s hidden left hand and the visible rubber hand are stroked synchroniously in the same direction, the subject will come to experience the artificial hand as his own. If the hands are stroked asynchronously or in different directions, this illusion will not occur. MRI scanner recorded increased activity in parietal lobe (importance in feelings of body ownership)  Experimenters threatened the rubber hand by making a stabbing movement to ward it with a needle. Brain scans showed anterior cingulate cortex, which is normally activated when a person anticipates pain, and also in a region (supplementary area) that is normal activated when a person feels the urge to move his arm. 7) The Goals of research  Generalization : A type of scientific explanation, a general conclusion based on many observations of similar phenomena .(Example : Psychologists would explain a pathologically strong fear of dogs as an example of a particular form of leaning called Classical conditioning. The person was frightened earlier in life by a dog. An unpleasant stimulus was paired with the sight of the animal and the subsequent sight of dogs evoked the earliest response : fear)  Reduction : A type of scientific explanation; a phenomenon is described in temrs of the more elementary processes that underlie it. (example : explaining movement of a muscle in terms of the changes in the membranes of muscles cells) 8) Biological roots of behavioral neuroscience  The Ancient Greeks considered the heart to be the seat of thought and emotions =>>> Hippocrates concluded that this role should be assigned to the brain  Aristotle : the brain serves to cool the passion of the heart  Galen : dissected and studied the brains of cattle, sheep, pigs, etc.  Descartes : o provide a good starting point in the modern history of behavioral neuroscience. o Animals were mechanical devices, their behavior controlled by environmental stimuli. His view of the human body => A machine. o Discovered the reflexes. He was a dualist, was the first to suggest a link exists between human mind and the brain. o He believed that the mind controls the movements while the body supplied the mind with information about what was happening in the environment. This interaction took place in the pineal body. (on top of brainstem beneath cerebral hemisp.) o He noted that the brain contained hollow chambers (ventricles) and filled with fluid under pressure. When the mind decided to perform an action, it tilted the pineal body in a direction, causing flid to flow from the brain into the appropriate set of nerves. This flow of fluid caused the same muscles to inflate and move. => the moving statues in the grottoes of the Royal Gardens served in theorizing about how the body worked.  Luigi Galvani : electrical stimulation of a frog’s nerve caused contraction of the muscle to which it was attached. (he proved Descartes wrong => the brain did not inflate muscles by directing pressurized fluid through nerve)  Johannes Muller: experimentally removed and isolated animals’ organs, testing their responses to various chemicals, and altering the environment to see how organs responded. His most important contribution is his doctrine of specific nerve energies => although all nerves carry the same message, we perceive it of different nerves in different ways, just like messages carried by optic nerves produce sensation of visual images while auditory nerves produce sensation of sounds.  Pierre Flourens: removed various parts of animals’ brains and observed their behavior. By seeing what an animal could no longer do, he could infer the function of the missing portion. (experimental ablation)  Paul Broca: observed the behavior of people whose rains had been damaged by strokes. His observations led him to conclude that a portion of cerebral cortex on the front part of left side of the brain performs functions necessary for speech.  Fritsch & Hitzig : found that stimulation of different portions of a specific region of the brain caused contraction of specific muscle on the opposite side of body. (primary motor cortex)  Hermann von Hemlholtz : speed of conduction through nerves 9) Natural selection and evolution  Darwin : natural selection and evolution. Functionalism : belief that characteristics of living organisms perform useful functions  Blest’s experiment in demonstrating adaptive traits: The owl butterfly displays its eyespots when approached by a bid. The bird usually flies away  Selective advantage : animal is more likely than other members of its species to live long enough to reproduce and pass on its chromosomes.  The first vertebrates to emerge from the sea were amphibians (frogs,toads). They still lay their eggs in water  Later, first reptiles appeared and had advantage over amphibians; eggs could be laid on land. Then, they divided into 3 lines. The therapsids became the dominant land animal during the Permian period. The end was marked by mass extinction and a small therapsid, a cynodont, direct ancestor of mammal survived.  The earliest mammals were small nocturnal predators that fed on insects. Then, Dinosaurs ruled so mammals had to remain small to avoid them. An enormous meteorite destroyed dinosaurs and only the small nocturnal mammals survived.  The first primates were small and preyed on insects. Over time, larger species developed with forward-facing eyes, facilitating locomotion and capture of prey. Then, there were hominids (humanlike apes)  Neoteny : A slowing of the process of maturation, allowing more time for growth, important factor in development of large brains. The skulls of fetal humans and chimpanzees are much more similar than are those of the adults.  Because an upright posture limits the size of a woman’s birth canal and therefore the size of head that can pass through it, much of the brain’s growth must take place after birth, which means that children require an extended period of parental care Chapter 3: Structure of the Nervous System – Lecture 3  Neuroaxis: imaginary line drawn through the center of the nervous system, with which the directions are in respect to o Anterior/ rostral: toward the direction of the head, to the front of the head o Posterior/caudal: toward the direction of the feet, to the back of the head o Ventral: Facing the abdominal direction, below the head o Dorsal: Facing the back, above the head  20% of total blood flow available for the brain  Meninges: membranes, layers covering the surface of the brain o Dura mater: Outer most layer which is thick and hard o Arachnoid membrane: Soft and spongy under the dura mater, containing the subarachnoid space beneath filled with CSF o Pia mater: Inner moster layer containing small blood vessels  Ventricular system: Within the brain dividing into four chambers o Produce cerebrospinal fluid from choroid plexus o CSF is reabsorbed in the subarachnoid granulation o Obstructive hydrocephalus happens when the cerebral aqueduct is too small or is blocked by a tumor  Development of central nervous system o Neural plate invagination gives raise to neural groove and neural crest cells o Further invagination forms the neural tube, which aligns with the long axis of the body and becomes the CNS o Just outside of the tube is the ventricular zone, containing progenitor cells o Progenitor cells multiply during the symmetrical division in order to increase the size of ventricular zone and creates the subventricular zone o During asymmetrical division, the progenitor cells divide into another progenitor cell and a brain cell o Radial glia is first produced, in order to transport subsequent brain cells away from the ventricular zone to form a thick cortex o Apoptosis indicates the end of this development, signaling progenitor cells to die and transforming radial glia into astrocytes o Postnatal brain development happens through experience, with neurogenesis from stem cells affecting the hippocampus  Forebrain o Telenchephalon  Include most of the symmetrical brain hemispheres  Cerebral cortex o Contains sulci, fissures, and gyri o Primary visual cortex receives visual information and is located above the Calcarine fissure o Primary auditory cortex receives auditory information and is located on the lower surface of the lateral fissure o Primary sensory cortex receives information from body senses and is located at the central sulcus o Primary motor cortex control body movements and is in front of the primary sensory cortex o Structurally speaking, the cerebral cortex is divided in 4 lobes: frontal, parietal, temporal, occipital o Perception takes place in the sensory association cortex, adjacent to the primary sensory areas o Premotor (motor association) cortex controls the primary motor cortex, directing behaviors o Corpus callosum is a large band of axons connecting both hemispheres  Limbic system o Linked to motivation and emotion o Include limbic cortex, anterior thalamic nuclei, amygdala, hippocampus, fornix, mammillary bodies  Basal ganglia o Collection of subcortical nuclei including caudate nucleus, putamen, and globus pallidus o Involved in movement control o Diencephalon  Thalamus o Contains projection neurons synapsing in different regions of the brain o Lateral geniculate nuclei receive information from the eyes and project to the primary visual cortex o Medial geniculate nuclei receive information from the inner ears and project to the primary auditory cortex o Ventrolateral nucleus receives input from the cerebellum and projects to the primary motor cortex  Hypothalamus o Controls the autonomic nervous system and the endocrine system with hormones from neurosecretory cells o Special blood vessels connects the hypothalamus to the anterior pituitary gland o Anterior pituitary gland is called the “master gland” because its function is to stimulate other glands o Posterior pituitary gland receives axon from hypothalamus o Midbrain (mesencephalon)  Tectum is the roof of the midbrain, with superior and inferior colluculi  Tegmentum is beneath the tectum o Include reticular formation, plays role in sleep and attention, muscle tonus, movement, and other vital reflexes o Periaqueductal gray matter o Red nucleus and substantia nigra influence movement o Hindbrain  Metencephalon o Cerebellum is responsible for movement coordination, and includes cerebellar cortex, deep cerebellar nuclei, cerebellar peduncles o Pons contain a part of reticular formation and is a relay point for the cerebellum  Myelencephalon o Medulla oblongata is responsible for some vital functions such as cardiovascular regulation, respiration, and muscle tone Chapter 4: Principles of Psychopharmacology  Routes of administration o Intravenous (IV) injection  Fastest route of application direct into a vein  Reaches the brain under few seconds  Requires more care and skills than other methods o Intraperitoneal (IP) injection  Injection through the abdominal wall into the peritoneal cavity  Rapid but not as fast as IV injection o Intramuscular (IM) injection  Injected into large muscles  Can control rate of absorption by taking other drugs that constrict blood vessels and slow down blood flow to muscles o Subcutaneous (SC) injection  Used with small drug dosage  Often useful when very slow absorption of drug is desirable o Oral administration  Most common form of application  Restricted to chemicals that are not destroyed by stomach acid or digestive enzyme, and that can be absorbed by the digestive system o Sublingual administration  Placing the drug beneath the tongue  Absorbed by capillary supplying the mucous membrane o Intrarectal administration  Useful route for drugs that may upset the stomach o Inhalation  Smoking cigarette (nicotine) and marijuana  Very rapid effects from lungs to brain o Topical administration  For chemicals that can be absorbed directly by the skin  Sniffing through the mucous membrane lining the nasal cavity  Rapid effect o Intracerebral administration  Direct injection into the brain for chemicals that cannot cross the blood-brain barrier  Injection into a specific region of the brain o Intracerebroventricular (ICV) administration  Also for chemicals that cannot cross the blood-brain barrier  Injection into the ventricles for a widespread distribution of the drug in the brain  Inactivation and excretion o Drugs will eventually be deactivated by enzymes from liver and in blood o Primarily excreted by the kidneys o Some drugs can be transformed by enzyme into another biologically active molecule, prolonging its effect time  Drug effectiveness o Therapeutic index is another measure of the margin of safety o Obtained through testing the difference in dose for the desirable and toxic effects o Smaller the index, smaller the margin of safety  Sites of drug action o Two categories for drugs that act on synaptic transmission  Antagonist blocks the post synaptic effect  Agonist facilitates the post synaptic effect o Effects on neurotransmitter production  Agonist provides precursor to neurotransmitter, increasing its rate of production  Antagonist inactivates enzymes that produce neurotransmitter o Effects on storage and release of neurotransmitter  Antagonist may block transport molecules that fill synaptic vesicles with neurotransmitters  Antagonist may prevent release at the terminal button by blocking proteins that cause vesicles to fuse with membrane  Agonist may facilitate the fusion of vesicles with membrane o Effects on receptors  Competitive binding o Direct agonist mimics the effect of the neurotransmitter and attaches to the postsynaptic binding site o Direct antagonist serves as receptor blocker, attaching to the binding site to prevent neurotransmitter from opening ion channels  Noncompetitive binding o Indirect antagonist attaches to alternate binding site and prevent ion channels from opening o Indirect agonist attaches to alternate binding site and facilitate opening of ion channels o Effects on reuptake or destruction of neurotransmitter  Neurotransmitters are normally inactivated at the synaptic cleft and shipped back into the neuron  Drugs that interfere with these processes prolong the effect of neurotransmitter at the terminal button and are agonists  Neurotransmitters and modulators o Acetylcholine (Ach)  Primary neurotransmitter for efferent axons of PNS  Responsible for muscle movement and some ganglionic activity of ANS  Ach released in the brain is mostly excitatory  Acetylcholinergic neurons in pons control REM sleep  Ach neurons in basal forebrain activates the cortex and facilitates learning  Ach neurons in medial septum control the electrical rhythm of hippocampus, modulating its functions  Nicotinic and muscarinic receptors o Monoamines  Molecular structures of monoamines are similar, so some drugs may affect all of them  Catecholamines o Dopamine  Have both excitatory and inhibitory properties depending on postsynaptic receptors  Responsible in learning, movement, attention, and reinforcement effect of drugs  In the nigrostriatal system (movement), located in substantia nigra and projecting to the striatum  In the mesolimbic system from tegmentum to various part of limbic system (rewarding)  In the mesocortical system to prefrontal cortex for planning and short term memory o Norepinephrine (NE)/ Epinephrine  Produced in renal medulla  Released from axonal varicosities  NE produces both effect, but the general behavioral effect is excitatory  Control vigilance  Serotonin o Role in the regulation of mood, control of eating, sleep, and arousal, and regulation of pain o In ralph nuclei of the midbrain, pons, and medulla o Amino acids  Glutamate o Principal excitatory neurotransmitter in brain and spinal cord o NMDA receptors, AMPA receptors, kainite receptor, and metabotropic glutamate receptor Chapter 5: Methods and Strategies of Research 1) Experimental Ablation  Destruction of brain tissues  Evaluating the Behavioral Effects of Brain Damage o Lesion studies are experiments where part of the brain is damaged in order to discover the functions that are performed by different regions of the brain and required for a particular behavior  Producing Brain Lesions o Stereotaxic surgery  Electrical current passing through a stainless steel wire coated with insulating substance except for the very tip  Producing radio frequency (RF) current that kills brain cells in the vicinity of the tip  Affects neural cell bodies and axons that passes through the set region o Excitotoxic lesions  Employ large amount of excitatory amino acid through a small tube which will stimulate the proximal neurons to death  Only affects neuronal cell bodies at the region and spares the axons passing by, therefore is a more selective method o Sham lesions  During experiments, the simple insertion of the wire or tube causes unwanted destruction along the path  To compare the effect of the lesion at the set region, sham lesions are induced in the control group by simply inserting the wire/tube without injecting a current or a chemical o Temporary lesions are produced by injecting local anesthetic to inhibit neuronal activities  Stereotaxic Surgery o Stereotaxic apparatus is used to fixed an animal’s head in position o Stereotaxic atlas  Contains photographs or drawing of frontal sections  There is enough similarities among animals of the same species to predict the location of brain structure relative to external features of the head  Bregma is the junction of the sagittal and coronal sutures of the skull and is often a reference point for stereotaxic surgeries  Due to possible variations, the brain always needs to be sliced afterwards to confirm that the surgery has been properly applied o Stereotaxic apparatus  Includes head holder, holder for the electrode, and a calibrated mechanism  Histological Methods o Brain lesions often miss the mark, so we need to verify the proper location of brain damage with slicing and staining after the behavioral observation o Fixation and sectioning  Animals are killed with overdose of anesthetics  Perfusion of the tissue is applied to remove blood and replace it with another fluid  Formalin is a common fixative that hardens the soft brain, kills microorganisms that may destroy it, and prevent its decomposition by destroying the autolytic enzymes  Brain is sliced into thin sections with a microtome and stained  Each section is placed on a microscope glass slide o Staining  Cell-body stain uses dyes that are taken up by nuclear proteins  Staining is not selective, so all neural cell bodies, such as neurons and glia, will take up the stain o Electron microscopy  A more precise microscope to see details such as cell’s organelles and synaptic vesicles  Transmission electron microscope shots a beam of electrons  Scanning electron microscope has less magnification but provide image in 3D o Confocal laser scanning microscopy  Can see through thick section, while conventional microscope needs thin section  Tracing Neural Connection o Once we know the contribution of a particular area for a particular behavior, we may want to know its relationship with other areas o Tracing efferent axons (anterograde labeling method)  To trace the neural output of an area  Injection of specific proteins will be taken up by dendrites of the neurons in that area, and will then be passed down their axons  Immunocytochemical method requires injection of an antigen to the desired area, let it spread through the axons of the cells in this area, and then kill the animal, slice its brain, and place the slice in a fluid containing antibody attached to a dye molecule o Tracing afferent axons (retrograde)  To trace the neural input of an area  Inject chemicals that can only be taken up by terminal buttons, and travels back to the cell body of these axons  Studying the Structure of the Living Human Brain o Studying the human brain to make inferences about the evolution of neural systems o Computerized tomography (CT) beam scans the head with X-ray o Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) provides higher resolution pictures using magnetic field o Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) uses the fact that movement of water in wh
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