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Phrenologists believed that the
contour of the skull could provide valuable information about an
individual's cognitive capacities and personality traits. This approach
was based on the assumption that
skull protrusions are caused by
disproportionate development of the brain areas beneath them, which are
responsible for different specific functions.
Different nerve cells have
different characteristic structures, and similar structures tend to
cluster together to form distinct areas. Duh, you already knew that.
This idea is known as _______________ and supports a _____________ view
of mammalian brain organization.
You just heard about a viral
video in which an individual with paraplegia can control a robotic arm
simply by thinking about it. Your friends think it is science fiction,
but you know that brain-machine interface is possible thanks to
advances in single neuron recording and control via detailed systems mapping.
You fell while attempting a 720
Gazelle Flip in the skate park. You were wearing a helmet (always wear a
helmet), but you still hit your head hard. The doctor at the ER thinks
you may have fractured your skull, so she orders a ____________ scan to
You asked a patient who had had
her corpus callosum surgically severed to draw figures (different line
shapes), each simultaneously with a different hand. Compared to
neurologically intact control participants, your patient...
was better at producing movements simultaneously with both hands, even when they differed in direction.
You have invented the Incredible
Shrinking Ship of Science. Well done. On your first journey into the
nervous system you decide to ride along a neural impulse as it traverses
a nerve cell. As you note the structures passing by, you see that
You've flowed from a dendritic
spine into a cell body, massed with other signals at the axon hillock,
been fired down the axon and out into the synaptic cleft.
You are the newest MI-6 agent,
009. Someone just slipped some ouabain into your drink. It is a toxin
that works by permanently inhibiting the activity of sodium-potassium
pumps embedded in neuronal membranes. As you run to get the antidote,
you think about what the poison is actually doing to you. How would this
dastardly deed affect the resting potential of your neurons?
The magnitude of the resting potential would shift toward zero.
You are an ER doctor with a
specialization in the pathology of strokes. A patient has just presented
with damage to their medial temporal lobe and neighboring subcortical
structures. Of the options here, which function is the LEAST likely to
be affected by this stroke?
You hypothesize that sleep loss
impacts executive function and mood control by depriving the brain of
energy via dysregulation of specialized glucose receptors in the brain.
Hey, me too! Cool. Of the following options, which imaging technique
would help us to best test this hypothesis?
(PET) Positron Emission
Tomography, in which we apply a radioactive atom to glucose in the body
and track its metabolism in the brain.
The following images were briefly
shown (about 200 ms) to a group of healthy 18 - 22 year olds. (A. man
smiling on the left and neutral on the right. B. man is neutral on the
left and smiling on the right).They were then asked to identify which
man, A or B was more emotionally expressive. Almost everyone answered
A, because emotion (his smile) is being presented to the right hemisphere in which emotional processing occurs.
At least 30,000 years ago, humans
started painting their hand outlines on the walls of caves, alongside
sophisticated depictions of animals. The caves were often deep and
difficult to get to. What might this indicate about the state of
humanity 30,000 years ago?
Homo sapiens may have been developing a conscious sense of self, essentially saying, "I was here."
You are a respected neurologist.
Congratulations! Your latest patient, however, has you stumped. They
appear to have had a small stroke, but the location has not yet been
identified. They show difficulty controlling eye movement, facial
expression, posture, and have extremely fragmented sleep. This broad
collection of symptoms points to dysfunction in the
Pons - the relay center between cerebellum and cerebrum (literally means "bridge"
You wake up one morning unable to
see. Oh no! At the doctor, a thorough examination reveals that there is
no damage to your eyes or your optic nerves. MRI indicates no damage to
your parietal lobe or primary visual cortex. Thanks to your extensive
CNS knowledge, you as the doctor to check your
lateral geniculate nucleus
(visual relay pathway in the thalamus, responsible for communicating
visual information with the primary visual cortex).
Congratulations! You just bought a
two photon-laser scanning microscope. You focus in on the vasculature
of the brain, just for kicks. As you dial that puppy up you see large
neural cells in direct contact with a series of blood vessels. What are
these cells called?
This got you wondering... how exactly does an oligodendrocyte create myelin on its host neuron?
It wraps its own cell membrane in
concentric circles around the axon of the neuron during neuronal
development. The wrapping movement eventually squeezes out the
oligodendrocyte's own cytoplasm, leaving a concentrated lipid layer
After all that science-ing during
the day, you spend the night dreaming of glia. In your dream you fly
through the nervous system, taking detailed notes while drinking a
Yoo-hoo (hey, its your dream). You notice a bunch of glial cells to your
left, scavenging and eating the remnants of damaged cells. Who are
The concept proposed by the great
Spanish neuroanatomist Santiago Ramon y Cajal in the 19th century that
the neuron is the fundamental units of the nervous system is composed of
billions of these units (neurons) connected to process information
There are two amygdalae per
person normally, with one amygdala on each side of the brain. They are
thought to be a part of the limbic system within the brain, which is
responsible for emotions, survival instincts, and memory.
A physical barrier formed by the
end feet of astrocytes between the blood vessels in the brain and the
tissues of the brain. The _____ limits which materials in the blood can
gain access to neurons in the nervous system.
The region of the nervous system
that contains groups of motor and sensory nuclei, nuclei of widespread
modulatory neurotransmitter systems, and white matter tracts of
ascending sensory information and descending motor signals.
The ____ receives information
from the sensory systems, the spinal cord, and other parts of the brain
and then regulates motor movements. It coordinates voluntary movements
such as posture, balance, coordination, and speech, resulting in smooth
and balanced muscular activity.
The layered sheets of neurons
that overlies the forebrain. The largest part of the human brain,
associated with higher brain function such as thought and action. Is
divided into four sections, called "lobes": the frontal lobe, parietal
lobe, occipital lobe, and temporal lobe.
White matter tracts that cross
from the left to the right side, or vice versa, of the CNS. It also
interconnects the amygdalas and temporal lobes, contributing to the role
of memory, emotion, speech and hearing. It also is involved in
olfaction, instinct, and sexual behavior.
Front part of the brain;
containing two principal regions; the motor cortex and the prefrontal
cortex. Involved in planning, organizing, problem solving, selective
attention, personality and a variety of "higher cognitive functions"
including behavior and emotions.
The more numerous cell type found
in the nervous system. The four main functions of these cells are: to
surround neurons and hold them in place, to supply nutrients and oxygen
to neurons, to insulate one neuron from another, and to destroy and
remove the carcasses of dead neurons.
A small organ located within the
brain's medial temporal lobe and forms an important part of the limbic
system, the region that regulates emotions. It is associated mainly with
memory, in particular long-term memory. The organ also plays an
important role in spatial navigation.
A portion of the brain that
contains a number of small nuclei with a variety of functions. One of
the most important functions of the hypothalamus is to link the nervous
system to the endocrine system via the pituitary gland
Several structures that form a
layer around the brain stem. A complex system of nerves and networks in
the brain, involving several areas near the edge of the cortex concerned
with instinct and mood. It controls the basic emotions (fear, pleasure,
anger) and drives (hunger, sex, dominance, care of offspring).
The _____ helps regulate
breathing, heart and blood vessel function, digestion, sneezing, and
swallowing. This part of the brain is a center for respiration and
circulation. Sensory and motor neurons (nerve cells) from the forebrain
and midbrain travel through the ______.
The portion of the cortex that
contains six main cortical layers and has a high degree of
specialization of neuronal organization. It is involved in higher
functions such as sensory perception, generation of motor commands,
spatial reasoning, conscious thought, and in humans, language.
A cortical lobe that contains a
variety of neurons, including the somatosensory cortex, gustatory
cortex, and parietal association cortex, which includes regions involved
in visuomotor orienting, attention, and representation of space.
A pea-sized structure located at
the base of the brain, just below the hypothalamus, to which it is
attached via nerve fibers. It is part of the endocrine system and
produces critical hormones, which are chemical substances that control
various bodily functions.
The __ contains nuclei that relay
signals from the forebrain to the cerebellum, along with nuclei that
deal primarily with sleep, respiration, swallowing, bladder control,
hearing, equilibrium, taste, eye movement, facial expressions, facial
sensation, and posture.
correspondence of an area of the body to a specific point on the central
nervous system. Typically, the area of the body corresponds to a point
on the primary somatosensory cortex (postcentral gyrus).
The location, at the juncture of
the soma and the axon of a neuron, where currents from synaptic inputs
on the soma and distant dendrites are summed and where voltage-gated Na+
channels are located that can be triggered to generate action
potentials that can propagate down the axon.
Adjacent areas in the superior,
posterior, and lateral parts of the temporal lobes are involved in
high-level auditory processing. The temporal lobe is involved in primary
auditory perception, such as hearing, and holds the primary auditory
A structure in the middle of the
brain. It is located between the cerebral cortex and the midbrain. It
works to correlate several important processes, including consciousness,
sleep, and sensory interpretation.
An experiment in which the
recorded neural activity is integrated over a "block" of time during
which the participant is either presented with a stimulus or preforms
task. The recorded activity pattern is then compared to other blocks
that have been recorded while doing the same task or stimulus, a
different one, or nothing.
A nonsurgical treatment to reduce
tremor and to block involuntary movements in patients with motion
disorders. Small electric shocks are delivered to the thalamus or the
globus pallidus, rendering these parts of the brain inactive without
surgically destroying them.
A paradigm used in fMRI studies
in which the BOLD response can be time-locked to particular stimuli and
responses. Such designs require using delays or temporal variation in
order to isolate the response to these events.
A test that uses a magnetic field
and pulses of radio wave energy to make pictures of organs and
structures inside the body. Usually measure variations in the density of
hydrogen ions in the tissure being scanned.
A neuroimaging method that
measures metabolic activity or blood flow changes in the brain by
monitoring the distribution of a radioactive tracer. The scanner
measures the photons produced during the decay of a tracer.
The distribution of the brain's
blood supply which can be measured. In PET scanning, ___ is used as a
measure of metabolic changes following increased neural activity in
restricted regions of the brain.
A noninvasive method used to
stimulate neurons in the brain. During a procedure, a strong electrical
current is rapidly generated in a coil and placed over the targeted
region. It is used in clinical setting to evaluate motor function by
direct stimulation of the motor cortex, creating brief reversible