PSYC 2650 Chapter Notes - Chapter 2: Capgras Delusion, Parietal Lobe, Frontal Lobe

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Published on 13 Apr 2013
School
University of Guelph
Department
Psychology
Course
PSYC 2650
Professor
Chapter 2: The Neural Basis for Cognition
Capgras Syndrome: An Initial Example
- This disorder is rare on its own but often accompanies Alzheimer’s syndrome
- Observed among the elderly, can result from various injuries to the brain
- Someone with Capgras syndrome is able to recognize the people in their
world but is convinced that these people are not who they appear to be (a
well-trained imposter of their loved one)
- Recognition involves two separate systems in the brain:
One leads to cognitive appraisal
The other to an emotional appraisal
- The concordance of these two appraisals then leads to recognition
- Examination of this disorder is made possible by neuro-imaging techniques:
PET scans (looks at structure of the brain)
-People with this disorder often suffer from abnormalities in the amygdala
and the pre frontal cortex
fMRI scans (tells us which portions of the brain are especially active during
scan)
- The damage to the amygdala is likely to be the reason why Capgras patients
experience no sense of familiarity
- The damage to the prefrontal cortex helps us understand why Capgras
patients offer such crazy hypotheses when they experience this lack of
familiarity
The Principal Structures of the Brain
- The human brain weighs between 3-4 pounds (roughly the size of a small
melon)
- Estimated to contain a trillion nerve cells
- Different parts of the brain perform different jobs
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Hindbrain, Midbrain, Forebrain
- The human brain is divided into three main structures
Hindbrain: sits directly atop the spinal cord and controls several key life
functions. (Ex. the rhythm of heartbeats and rhythm of breathing, posture and
balance)
-The largest area of the hindbrain is the cerebellum. (role: coordination of our
bodily movements, integrating input received from various sensory systems)
Midbrain: plays an important part in coordinating our movements, relays
auditory information from the ears, and regulates our experience of pain.
Forebrain: the largest region.
-The outer surface is the cortex (thin covering on outer surface of the brain,
constitutes 80% of the human brain)
-The longitudinal fissure is the deepest groove running from the front of the
brain to the back and separating the left cerebral hemisphere from the right.
-Other fissures divide the cortex in each hemisphere into four lobes:
Frontal lobes: directly behind the forehead
Parietal lobes: the brains top most part
Temporal lobes: below the frontal lobes
Occipital lobes: at the very back of the brain, connected to the parietal and
temporal lobes
-The central fissure divides the frontal lobes from the parietal lobes
-The lateral fissure divides the frontal lobes from the temporal lobes
Subcortical Structures (beneath the cortex)
Thalamus: acts as a relay station for nearly all sensory information going to
the cortex
Hypothalamus: directly below thalamus, controls motivated behaviours;
eating, drinking, sexual activity
Limbic System: surrounds thalamus and hypothalamus. Includes:
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Document Summary

This disorder is rare on its own but often accompanies alzheimer"s syndrome. Observed among the elderly, can result from various injuries to the brain. Someone with capgras syndrome is able to recognize the people in their world but is convinced that these people are not who they appear to be (a well-trained imposter of their loved one) Recognition involves two separate systems in the brain: The concordance of these two appraisals then leads to recognition. Examination of this disorder is made possible by neuro-imaging techniques: Pet scans (looks at structure of the brain) People with this disorder often suffer from abnormalities in the amygdala and the pre frontal cortex. Fmri scans (tells us which portions of the brain are especially active during scan) The damage to the amygdala is likely to be the reason why capgras patients experience no sense of familiarity.

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