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Chapter 4

Chapter 4 Notes for Midterm

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Steve Joordens

PSYA01Fall2011 Chapter 4 Biology of BehaviourThe Brain and Its Componentso 10 billion to 100 billion nerve cells arranged in modules clusters Structure of the Nervous System o Brain has 3 major functions controlling behaviour processing and retaining information we receive from the environment and regulating the bodys physiological processes o Central nervous system the brain and the spinal cord o Spinal cord a long thin collection of nerve cells attached to the base of the brain running the length of the spinal columncontrols simple reflexes like pulling away from hot surface o The CNS communicates with the rest of the body through nerves o Nerve a bundle of fibres that transmit information between the central nervous system and the bodys sense organs muscles and glandso Peripheral nervous system the cranial and spinal nerves that part of the nervous system peripheral to the brain and spinal cord o Sensory information what is happening in the environment is conveyed from sensory organs to the brain and spinal cord o Cranial nerves a bundle of nerve fibres attached to the base of the brain conveys sensory information from the face and head and carries messages to muscles and glandso Spinal nerves a bundle of nerve fibres attached to the spinal cord conveys sensory information from the body and carries messages to the muscles and glandso The cranial and spinal nerves also carry information away from the central nervous system from the spine and the brain to the muscles and glands o Human brain has 3 major parts the brain stem the cerebellum and the cerebral hemisphereso Brain stem the stem of the brain including the medulla pons and mid braincontrol of physiological functions and automatic behavioursoCerebral hemispheres the largest part of the brain covered by the cerebral cortex and containing parts of the brain which evolved more recentlyinvolved in behaviour o Cerebellum a pair of hemispheres resembling the cerebral hemispheres but much smaller and lying beneath and in back of them controls posture and movements especially rapid oneso Brain is protected encased in skull and the spinal cord runs through the middle of a column of vertebrae o Vertebra one of the bones that encases the spinal cord and constitute the vertebral columno Meninges the 3 layered set of membranes that enclose the brain and spinal cordo Cerebrospinal fluid CSF the liquid in which the brain and spinal cord float provides a shock absorbing cushiono Bloodbrain barrier a barrier between the blood and the brain produced but the cells in the walls of the brains capillaries prevents some substances from passing from blood into the braino Cerebral cortex the outer layer of the cerebral hemispheres of the brain approximately 3 mm thickperceptions take place here memories are stored and plans are formed and executed o Grey matter the portions of the central nervous system that are abundant in cell bodies of neurons rather than axons The colour appears grey relative to white matter o White matter the portions of the CNS that are abundant in axons rather than cell bodies of neurons The colour derives from the presence of axons myelin sheaths 1
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