Chapter 3: Biological Foundations:
Synesthesia: cross sense experience
Behavioural genetics: the study of how genes and environment interact to influence psychological
Neurons, three functions:
• Taking in information from neighboring neurons (reception)
• Integrating those signals (conduction)
• Passing signals to other neurons (transmission)
Three major events that terminates the transmitters’ influence in the synaptic cleft
• Reuptake: neurotransmitters are taken back into the Presynaptic terminal buttons.
• Enzyme deactivation: an enzyme destroys the transmitter substance in the synaptic cleft.
Different enzyme destroys different neurotransmitters.
• Autoreceptors: when excess is detected, the autoreceptors signal the Presynaptic neuron to
stop releasing neurotransmitter.
Neurotransmitters Influence Mind and Behaviour:
• Drugs and Toxins can also mimic neurotransmitters and bind with their receptors as if they
were the real thing. i.e. Heroin and cocaine.
• Types of neurotransmitters: Ach, excites skeleton muscles and inhibits heart muscles.
Botulism, a form of food poisoning inhibits the release of Ach, leading difficulty in breathing
and chewing and often to death. Botox
• Monoamines: regulate states of arousal and affect and to motivate behaviour.
o Epinephrine: energy
o Norepinephrine: arousal and vigilance (alert)
o Serotonin: Emotional States and impulsiveness; dreaming. Leaving it in the synapse
to bind with postsynaptic neurons can treat depression
o Dopamine: reward and motivation; motor control over voluntary moveme nt.
o GABA: slow down
o Glutamate: speed up
o Endorphins natural pain reduction; reward. Painkilling effect.
o Substance P: pain perception
Basic Brain Structure and Their Functions:
• Two functional units: Central Nervous System & Peripheral Nervous System
• Phineas Gage: p