Psych 255 Final

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Belief we have of mind and brain- can’t be measured- allows choices, free will, agency



No soul- no free will or agency- everything is based off of chemical make-up- cause and affect


Natural Selection

Natural selection is a gradual process in which certain biological traits become more or less common in a species in order to adapt to their environment in order to survive and reproduce so that they can pass on their genes. One example of this is the example of mice being eaten by owls in a desert. The dark colored mice get eaten more because they stand out and the tan mice blend in with the sand and rarely get eaten. The tan mice then reproduce and produce more tan mice and eventually the dark colored mice become wiped out and the tan color becomes much more common


Motor Neurons

Information to the muscles


Sensory Neurons

Information to the brain



Information in the CNS



Protect the synapse, remove debris, provide nutrients



Kills invading chemicals



Create myelin


Compare and contrast the functions of oligodendrocytes and schwann cells in regards to myelination and neuron elongation

Schwaan cells help with myelination of injured - Oligodendrocytes can wrap up to about 50 axons whereas Schwann cells can wrap only one. Oligodendrocytes are in the CNS and Schwann cells are in the PNS- oligodendrocytes tell cell to stop growing and Schwann cells allow for neuron growth and repair


function of the blood brain barrier

do not allow nutrients or toxins to get in and do not allow anything out- packed very tightly


Function of autoreceptors

Regulate neurotransmitter production


CSF production process

CSF is always moving. It is made in the Choroid Plexus of lateral ventricles and is mostly contained in the lateral ventricle. After it is made, it goes into the third ventricle and travels down the cerebral aquaduct into the fourth ventricle where it then flows to the subarachnoid space. The CSF is reabsorbed by arachnoid granulations back into the bloodstream to be recycled.


First stage of sleep

Theta waves- more synchronized and slower- louder


Second stage of sleep

Sleep spindles and K complexes-sleep spindles are short bouts of about 2-3 seconds of beta waves in the theta waves in charge of memory consolidation- k complexes are 2-3 second bouts of Delta waves in the theta waves- very long and slow- correlated with intelligence


Third stage of sleep

Less than 50% Delta waves


Fourth stage of sleep

More than 50% Delta waves- slow wave sleep- deepest sleep- do some dreaming in this stage


REM sleep

Rapid Eye Movement- 90 minutes after you fall asleep- sleep paralysis, easily awakened- 1-9 second dreams


Describe the Sleep wake flip flop

VL Preoptic area in charge of sleep- VLPA and arousal area- between them mutual inhibition- preoptic area sends inhibition to arousal area and arousal area sends inhibition to vlpa- when awake- arousal areas are functioning and sending inhibition to preoptic area and doesn’t allow arousal- major chemical keeps arousal areas working- orexin- major chemical works on arousal areas to keep them inhibiting preoptic area- body clock increases orexin, hunger increases orexin, satiaty- full- opposite of hunger- inhibits orexin- sleep caused by chemical adenosine- when adenosine builds up- inhibitory and cancels orexin- shuts off inhibition and cause preoptic area to inhibit arousal and put you to sleep


Explain the role of serotonin in aggression

Serotonin inhibits aggression


Role of the ventromedial prefrontal cortex in emotion

Regulates emotion-receives information directly from the thalamus, prefrontal lobe, midbrain, and amygdala

  • Information about the environment and what the brain is doing about it
  • Then can alter behavior, regulate emotion

James Lange theory

Found by William james- hard to understand

-First a physiologically response happens and then we feel an emotion

-Body response that happens first followed by emotion

-Higher injury on spinal cord- less emotion


Osmometric thirst

Fluid around the cells increase- Intracellular fluid decreases due to osmosis- Detected by osmoreceptors on OVLT- part on the brainstem near area postrema. Osmoreceptors firing rate depends on hydrated they are. Median preoptic nucleus is alerted- leads to desire to drink


Volumetric thirst

Fluid around cells decreases and intracellular fluid increases- caused by loss of fluid due to vomiting and diarrhea. Kidney detects this thirst and send chemical renin- renin turns plasma in our blood to angiotensin- angiotensin acts in area SFO and alerts median preoptic nucleus- leads to an urgent thirst and need to drink.


What starts a meal?

Ghrelin- chemical produced by stomach. Small intestines (duodenum) release ghrelin if stomach or upper intestines are empty.

Glucoprivation- lacking glucose

Lipoprivation- lacking lipids or fats


Short term satiety

Nose and mouth help us to keep track of the calories that we eat- gastric information- there is a decreases in ghrelin when we are full. There is a signal to stop eating after food reaches the liver. Insulin helps us feel full as well.


Long term satiety

Leptin is a hormone in the fat tissue or adipose tissue- takes some time and is long term satiety. Increases body temp, metabolism, and activity. Causes you to eat less.


Long term potentiation

- Long term changes to postsynaptic excitation strength due to a certain stimuli cause by repetition of that input- Two types of glutamate receptors

AMPA – sodium

NMDA – Calcium – blocked by Magnesium

Normal activation of the hippocampus releases glutamate which binds to AMPA and NMDA receptors allowing sodium to pass through AMPA

Not enough to reach LTP

Frequent bursts of activation of a neuron will release more glutamate

This will cause a larger action potential and expel the magnesium allowing calcium to flow in

LTP early phase

Ca will bind to proteins and create MORE AMPA receptors

Last only a few hours – short term

LPT late phase

Ca change genetic code

More AMPA receptors

More synapses (dendrite growth/elongation)

Last 24 hours to lifetime


Reward Pathway

VTA--> Mesolimbic pathway--> NAC


Hebb's rule

If a synapse becomes active at the same time a neuron fires, the synapse becomes stronger.

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