Biological Basis of Behavior

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13 terms

Biopsychology

Specialty in psychology that studies the interaction of biology, behavior and mental process

Neuroscience

a relatively new interdisciplinary field that focuses on the brain and its role in psychological processes

Evolution

the gradual process of biological change that occurs in a species as it adapts to its environment

Natural Selection

driving force behind evolution by which the environment selects the fittest organism

Genotype

an organisms genetic makeup

Phenotype

an organisms observable, physical characteristics

DNA

a long complex molecule that encodes genetic characteristics.

Gene

segment of a chromosome that encodes the directions for the inherited physical and mental characteristics of an organism, these are the funtional units of a chromosome

Chromosome

tightly coiled, threadlike structure along with the genes are organized like beads on a necklace

Neuron

cells specialized to recieve and transmit information to other cells in the body. Also called a nerve cell

Sensory Neuron

nerve cell that carries messages from sense receptors toward the central nervous system. Also called an afferemt neuron

Motor Neuron

nerve cell that carries messages away from the central nervous system towards the muscles and glands; efferent neuron

Interneuron

a nerve cell that relays messages between nerve cells especially in the brain and spinal cord

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