Quiz #1: Emotions, Heroes, & Halfwits

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identify the cerebellum, medulla oblongata, and frontal lobe in a brain image and recall the function of the brain area.


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identify the cerebellum, medulla oblongata, and frontal lobe in a brain image and recall the function of the brain area.

cerebellum: coordinate movement & motor learning

medulla oblongata: breathing

frontal lobe: executive function

apply principles of deducing brain function from loss-of-function lesion studies to identify the function of a new brain area.

remove X --> person cannot do function X --> therefore, function of X is to help with function X

examine animals (including humans) who have parts of their brain missing and see what functions are lost

recall the brain connection disrupted in lobotomies and deduce the behavioral effect of lobotomies.

lobotomies sever the connection between the entire frontal lobe to the thalamus (relay center for sensory systems to frontal lobe)

lobotomies lead to patients feeling mummified calm (still have senses but don't have the executive function to act upon stimuli)

lobotomies were:

  • quick

  • severed the thalamus from the frontal lobe

  • widely given to stop psychosis and children's temper tantrums

  • sometimes calmed psychosis but also made patient mentally dull

  • shameful part of neuroscience history

distinguish broca's area from wernicke's area. propose a behavioral test to determine whether broca's area or wernicke's area was affected.

broca's area: language production

wernicke's area: language comprehension

behavioral test: when you damage broca's area, a patient can understand the speech of others but can't produce any speech themself. when you damage wernicke's area, a patient may be able to produce speech but cannot understand the speech of others.

provide an example of how brain imaging or recording of brain activity can predict responsiveness to antidepressants.

increased rostral anterior cingulate cortex (rACC) theta activity linked to better antidepressant (sertraline) outcome

describe how selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, and monoamine oxidase inhibitors affect neurotransmission and how they are thought to treat depression according to the monoamine hypothesis of depression.

increase the amount of neurotransmitters in the synaptic cleft (thought to treat depression according to the monoamine hypothesis of depression, which states that depression is caused by depletion in levels of serotonin, norepinephrine, and/or dopamine)

identify the axon, axon terminal, cell body, dendrite, and dendritic spines in a cartoon neuron & describe the general function of each.

dendrite: the segments of the neuron that receive stimulation in order for the cell to become active

dendritic spines: typically where neuron receive messages from other neurons

cell body: connects to the dendrites, which bring information to the neuron, and the axon, which sends information to other neurons

axon: to transmit information to different neurons

axon terminal: typically where neurons send messages to other neurons

identify the range of axon lengths in the human body.

the longest axon in your body is the sciatic nerve. it begins at your big toe and ends at the base of your spinal cord (approx 3 feet)

distinguish exocytosis and endocytosis.

exocytosis: name of the process by which neurotransmitters are released from the presynaptic neuron, describes the process of vesicles fusing with the plasma membrane and releasing their contents to the outside of the cell (vesicle fusion)

endocytosis: the process of capturing a substance or particle from outside the cell by engulfing it with the cell membrane and bringing it into the cell (vesicle fission)

distinguish the effects of botox and loss of dynamin, and describe the mechanism of action.

botox inhibits vesicles from fusing to the plasma membrane by inhibiting snare proteins (blocks exocytosis)

dynamin mutants are missing a protein called dynamin. these mutants have blocked vesicle fission (blocks endocytosis)

describe how current is carried in a neuron.

electrical impulses going through a neuron are due to differences in ion concentrations

distinguish depolarization from hyperpolarization.

depolarization: when the membrane potential becomes less negative (more positive)

hyperpolarization: when the membrane potential becomes more negative at a particular spot on the neuron's membrane

describe the sequential steps in an action potential and how this affects depolarization and hyperpolarization.

step 1: Na+ channels open

  • depolarize membrane potential away from the resting potential toward equilibrium potential for Na+

step 2: K+ channels open

  • hyperpolarization of the membrane potential towards equilibrium potential for K+

step 3: after a delay, Na+ channels inactivate, helping K+ channels to hyperpolarize membrane potential

define membrane potential and determinants of membrane potential.

membrane potential: the difference in electrical charges inside and outside a cell creates a voltage difference

difference in ion concentrations causes the voltage difference across the membrane

name a drug that affects the action potential.

tetrodotoxin (TTX) blocks voltage-gated sodium channels (blocks depolarization/action potentials)

provide a neurochemistry examine of how energy and matter cannot be created or destroyed, but can be changed from one form to another.

neurotransmitter synthesis and degradation pathways

provide counterarguments which propose that the monoamine hypothesis of depression is wrong.

a successful antidepressant (tianeptine) does not raise monoamine levels

some people with depression do not have decreased levels of monoamines

lesioning monoaminergic systems does not always induce or worsen depression

identify two key components of the mesolimbic pathway of the "reward center".

nucleus accumbens and ventral tegmental area

describe an experiment that shows that dopamine serves as a reward prediction-error signal.

when a conditioned stimulus music was played, the monkey's neurons were firing much quicker than when the reward was presented (dopamine is involved in ANTICIPATING reward)

when CS was presented but reward wasn't, there was a decrease in dopamine activity (prediction-error correction)

recall adrian raine's findings about the brains of impulsive murderers.

he found a reduction of gray matter in the prefrontal cortex

describe how the prefrontal cortex modulates anger mediated by the amygdala and hypothalamus.

the prefrontal cortex can mask anger mediated by the amygdala and lower brain regions

amygdala: influences our motivation, emotional control, fear response, and interpretations of nonverbal emotional expressions

hypothalamus: regulates fear, thirst, sexual drive, sleep, and aggression

identify the experiments which showed attack neurons are specific to the ventrolateral hypothalamus and that these neurons are sufficient and necessary for aggression.

optogenetic activation of VMHvl (with channelrhodopsin) causes mice to behave violently

optogenetic silencing of VMHvl (with halorhodopsin) causes the mice to stop violent behavior

identify the experiments which showed social experience, specifically social isolation, increases aggressive behavior.

flies raised in social isolation are very aggressive

flies raised in groups are relatively placid

describe relative locations of brain regions using the anatomical reference points of: anterior/posterior, dorsal/ventral, lateral/medial, rostral/caudal

anterior: in front of; toward the face

posterior: behind; toward the back

dorsal: toward top of brain or back of spinal cord

ventral: toward bottom of brain or front of spinal cord

lateral: toward edge

medial: toward middle

rostral: toward front of brain or top of spinal cord (sounds like nostril)

caudal: toward back of brain or bottom of spinal cord (caudal = tail)

identify the amygdala in brain images and as the hub of emotional processing.

amygdala = nut/almond shaped

explicit emotional processing: conscious, declarative evaluation of emotional states

implicit emotional processing: unconscious, automatic processing of emotional stimuli

interpret brain images and behavioral tasks to evaluate whether or not the shown data supports a conclusion.

examine brain images from individuals while they are performing the task

look for information about location of brain activity and relative activity at different times of the task