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UW-Madison PSYCH 202 - February 3, 2015 Psych Lecture

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Psychology Lecture February 3, 2015- Amino acids are general inhibitory and excitatory transmitters in the brain- GABA  inhibits (relaxes); drugs that mimic are used for anxiety or insomnia; alcohol and sedatives have similar impacts on GABA receptors; excess GABA= unmotivated; shortage= anxiety, epilepsy, Huntington’s- Glutamate- excites; helps learning/memory- “Getting Buzzed” (ecstasy)- serotonin is massively depleted (terminal buttons often destroyed); read Ecstasy article- MMDA= “penicillin for the soul”- SHROOMS - Amphetamines/Cocaine- increase Norepinephrine and dopamine; block reuptake and increase release; activate sympathetic nervous system (inc. heart rate and blood pressure)- Nicotine- acts on same sites as Ach (acetylcholine)- impacts learning and memory- Benzodiazepines/Valium- increase response to GABA (relaxes); Valium is addictive - Opiates (morphine, heroine, codeine)- activate receptors that usually respond to endorphins; increase dopamine activation in the nucleus accumbens, binding with opiate receptors; highly addictive due to dual activation of dopamine and opiate receptors- Hallucinogenic drugs- LSD similar structure to serotonin; people experience dreamlike quality- Marijuana- most widely used illegal drug; THC produces relaxed mental state, uplifted/contented mood, and perceptual/cognitive distortions- Concentration of cannabinoid receptors are in the hippocampus- Medicinal properties are controversial- Overview: How are neural messages integrated into communication systems?- The endocrine system communicates through hormones- Actions of the nervous system and endocrine system are coordinated- Afferent nerves- sensory; efferent nerves-motor- Somatic nervous system: acts on skeletal muscles- Endocrine system communicates through hormones and nervous system uses electrochemical signals- Hypothalamus is a critical integrating structure; next to pituitary gland- Diverse types of CNS neurotransmitters play a central role in our psychological existence, identity, and experience of the world  the machinery of the mind underlies psychological realitiesPart 2: Basic Brain Structures and Functions- Brain plasticity: capacity of the brain to change; brain changes with use and how we use it- We have a left and right amygdala, hippocampus, etc.- Brain stem is primitive part of our functioning- Subcortical structures control basic drives and emotions- Cerebellum= essential for movement- Damage to subcortical structures impacts cerebral cortex- Midbrain= tectum and tegmentum- Hindbrain- coordinates info coming into and out of the spinal cord and controls the basic functions of life; Medulla- vital involuntary functions; Pons- relays info from cerebellum; Reticular formation- sleep, arousal, attention- Brainstem is important for gagging, breathing, swallowing- Cerebellum- motor learning; important w/ empathy; some cognitive processes- Don’t need to know the difference between tegmentum and tectum in this class- these parts orient you towards sensory stimuli (midbrain)- Limbic system-above brainstem; controls motivation, emotion, memory; contains thalamus (sensory relay system); contains amygdala (“aggression center”); hippocampus; hypothalamus (regulate temp., hunger, activity of ANS, hormone release, site of “pleasure center”); separates the “older” and “newer” parts of the brain; basal ganglia- Frontal (thought, planning, movement), temporal (hearing, memory), occipital (vision), parietal lobe (touch, spatial relations)- Broca’s area- in frontal lobe; produce speech and language- Wernicke’s area- in temporal lobe; interpret speech and


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