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AP Psy: Biopsy 1

Biopsychology, neuroscience.

QuestionAnswer
Biopsychology The specialty that studies the interaction of biology, behavior, and mental processes.
Neuroscience A relatively new 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 The force by which the environment selects the fittest organisms.
Genotype An organism's genetic makeup.
Phenotype Observable, physical characteristics of an organism's genetic makeup.
DNA A long, complex molecule that encodes genetic characteristics.
Gene A segment of a chromosome that encodes the directions for the inherited physical and mental characteristics of an organism.
Chromosome Tightly coiled, threadlike structure along which the genes are organized, like beads on a necklace. Consists primarily of DNA.
Neuron (Nerve) Cell specialized to recieve and transmit info to other cells in the body- also called a nerve cell.
Sensory neurons Nerve cell that carries messages from sense receptors toward the central nervous system. Also called afferent neuron.
Motor neuron Nerve cell that carries messages away from the central nervous system toward the muscles and glands. Also called an efferent neuron.
Interneuron A nerve cell that relays messages between nerve cells, especially in the brain and spinal cord.
Dendrite A branched fiber that extends outward from the main cell body and carries information into the neuron.
Soma The part of a cell containing the nucleus, which includes chromosomes. Also called the cell body.
Axon In a nerve cell, an extended fiber that conducts information from the soma to the terminal buttons. Infomation travels along the axon in the form of an electric charge called the action potential.
Resting potential Electrical charge of the axon in its inactive state, when neuron is ready to fire.
Action potential Nerve impulse caused by a change in electrical charge across the cell membrane of the axon. When the neuron fires, this charge travels down the axon and causes neurotransmitters to be released by the terminal buttons.
All-or-nothing principle Action potential either occurrs full blown, or not at all.
Synapse Microscopic gap that serves as a communications link between neurons.
Terminal buttons Tiny bulblike structures at the end of the axon, which contain neurotransmitters that carry the neuron's message into the synapse.
Synaptic transmission The relaying of information across the synapse be means of chemical neurotransmitters.
Synaptic vesicle A small container holding neurotransmitter molecules that then connects to the presynaptic membrane, releasing the neurotransmitter into the synapse.
Neurotransmitters Chemical messensgers that relay neural messages across the synapse. Many are also hormones.
Plasticity The nervous system's ability to adapt or change as the result of experience.
Gilal cells Cells that bind the neurons together. Also provides insulation of the axon.
Nervous system Entire network of neurons in the body, including the central nervous system, the peripheral nervous system, and their subdivisions.
Central nervous system Brain and spinal cord.
Reflex A simple, unlearned response triggered by stimuli.
Peripheral nervous system All parts of the nervous system lying outside the CNS. Contains somatic and automnic NS.
Somatic nervous system Division of the PNS that carries sensory information to the CNS and also sends voluntary messages to the body's skeletal muscles.
Automnic nervous system Portion of PNS that sends communications between CNS and internal organs and glands.
Sympathetic division Part of ANS that sends messages to internal organs and glands that help us respond to stressful and emergency situations.
Parasympathetic division Part of ANS that monitors the routine operations of the interal organs and returns the body to calmer functioning after stimulation by sympathetic divison.
Endocrine system The hormone (chemical messenger) system) including glands: pituitary, thyroid, parathyroid, adrenals, pancreas, ovaries, and testes.
Hormone A chemical messenger used by the endocrine system.
Pituitary gland "Master gland", produces hormones influencing the secretions of all other endocrine glands, as well as a hormone that influences growth.
Agonist Drug that mimics effects of neurotransmitters.
Antangonist Drug that inhibits effects of neurotransmitters.
Neural pathway Bundle of nerve cells that follow generally the same route and employ the same neurotransmitter.
Created by: rocstarmentaliti