Biology 621A - Chapter 12 - Nervous System (Sec 12.1/12.2)

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neuron

a nerve cell; the basic building block of the nervous system.

brain

specialized group of nerve cells that controls & coordinates activities of the nervous system

cns

the portion of the vertebrate nervous system consisting of the brain and spinal cord

pns

subdivision of the nervous system that brings information to the cns

autonomic nerves

serves the internal organs of the body

nerve impulse

message that travels from the dendrites of a neuron to the axon

axon

long nerve fiber that conducts away from the cell body of the neuron

dendrite

the branching extensions of a neuron that receives messages and conducts impulses toward the cell body

schwann cell

large nucleated cells that form myelin around the axons of neurons

node of ranvier

small gap between myelinated segments where axonal membrane is exposed; increase speed of impulses

synapse

the space between two neurons through which neurotransmiters travel

receptor

recieves information about changes in the enviroment (stimuli)

effector

muscles or glands that respond to impulses

stimulus

something that causes a response

cell body

contains major concentration of the cytoplasm and the nucleus of the neuron

myelin

an electrically-insulating phospholipid (fat) layer that surrounds the axons of many neurons

reflex

A relatively simple, involuntary response to a stimulus.

resting potential

the potential difference between the two sides of the membrane of a nerve cell when the cell is not conducting an impulse

action potential

change in electrical potential that occurs between the inside and outside of a nerve or muscle fiber when it is stimulated

refractory period

the time after a neuron fires during which a stimulus will not evoke a response

saltatory conduction

transmission of an impulse by jumping

neurotransmitter

a chemical messenger that travels across the synapse from one neuron to the next and influences whether a neuron will generate an action potential(impulse)

spinal cord

part of central nervous system, links brain to rest of body

cerebellum

responsible for balance and coordination, routine movement

cerebrum

the largest part of the brain, controls thinking, reasoning, and memory

corpus callosum

connects the hemispheres; found deep inside cerebrum; allows hemispheres to share information

pons

relay link between brain and spinal cord

medulla oblongata

Regulates ♥ heart rhythm, blood flow, breathing rate,etc.

endorphins

natural neurotransmitters linked to pain control

sclera

Tough, white outer layer of the eye

autonomic nervous system

The part of the nervous system that controls involuntary action and responses.

Parkinson's Disease

a progressive disease that destroys brain cells and is identified by muscular tremors, slowing of movement, and partial facial paralysis

Alzheimer's Disease

a disease that results in the progressive loss of an individual's memory and mental capacity.

ALS

"Lou Gherig's Disease" - progressive neurological disease in which the motor neurons degenerate to the point of total loss of motor function. The intelligence, memory, and personality is unaffected.

Multiple Sclerosis

disorder in which myelin is destroyed causing loss of motor activity

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