Nervous System and Brain Stem

Topics: Nervous system, Neuron, Brain Pages: 14 (4555 words) Published: November 18, 2012
Biopsychology: A specialty that studies the interaction of biology, behavior, and mental processes. Evolution: The gradual process of biological change that occurs in a species as it adapts to its environment new generations change as they adapt to changing environments Evolution has fundamentally shaped psychological processes because it favors genetic variations that produce adaptive behavior Charles Darwin:Wondered if animals were related and if all creations, even humans, could share a common ancestry made the controversial case for the evolution of life

Natural selection:The driving force behind evolution, the fittest organisms are selected by the environment, the best adapted will flourish and the least adapted will die out. Darwin never said humans came from monkeys, but that they both had a common ancestor Genetics and inheritance:

Genotype: Genetic Makeup
Phenotype: Physical and behavioral characteristics (observable characteristics) not all biological, also can be changed by nutrition, disease, stress, and poor medical care causing birth defects Genome: Set of genetic information contained within a cell DNA:A complex molecule that stores biological information Genes: The words that make up the instruction manual (genome) Chromosomes:Tightly coiled structures in which genes are organized, consist of DNA Nucleotides: letters that form genes, there are 4

Sex chromosomes: The X and Y chromosomes that determine physical sex characteristics XX-female XY-male , fathers determine sex
Genes influence our psychological characteristics
Never attribute psychological characteristics to genetics alone, even identical twins Race and human variations: Certain features of skin color and other physical characteristics are common among people who trace their ancestry to the same part of the world tropical ancestry have darker skin to protect them from the sun, and lighter skin for less sunny places There are no genetic differences for races, race is more of a socially defined term Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis: Testing fetus at a very young age to ensure a genetically healthy fetus Some of these clinics also offer gender selection and 'savior siblings' How does the body communicate internally?

The nervous system reacts first:accelerate your heart rate and tense your muscles for action Endocrine system sends follow-up messages:send hormones which also accelerate heart and tense muscles they work together in stressful and happier situations and even during low arousal states the brain is the chief that manages the cooperation of the nervous and endocrine systems The brain coordinates the bodys 2 communication systems, the nervous and endocrine, which use similar chemical processes to communicate with targets throughout the body Neuron (nerve cell) : cell that receives and transmits information to other cells of the body, bundles are called nerves Sensory neuron (afferent neurons): A cell that carries messages towards the brain from sense receptors Motor neuron (efferent neurons): A cell that carries messages away from the brain to the muscles and glands Interneurons: A cell that relays messages between nerve cells, especially in the brain and spinal cord Dendrites: Branched fibers that extend outward from the cell body and carries information into the neuron Soma: part of the cell containing the nucleus or cell body, houses chromosomes Axon: An extending fiber that conducts information from the soma to the terminal buttons Resting potential: The electrical charge of the axon in its inactive state, when neuron is ready to 'fire' Action potential: When the neuron 'fires' due to a change in electrical charge across the cell membrane of axon All or none principle: action potential in the axon occurs either...
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