The Nervous System. Overall Function

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1 The Nervous System

2 The Nervous System Overall Function COMMUNICATION Works with the endocrine system in regulating body functioning, but the nervous system is specialized for SPEED

3 Neurons A neuron is the functional unit of the nervous system Neurons are specialized for transmitting signals from one location in the body to another Neurons consist of a large cell body (contain a nucleus and other organelles), and neuronal processes Axons Conduct messages AWAY from cell body Dendrites Conducts messages TOWARD cell body

4 Neuron Structure

5 Neuron = dendrite + cell body + axon

6 Structure of a Neuron dendrites cell body INPUT ZONE TRIGGER ZONE axon CONDUCTING ZONE OUPUT ZONE axon endings

7 Communication Lines Stimulus (input) Receptors (sensory neurons) Integrators (interneurons) motor neurons Effectors (muscles, glands) Response (output)

8

9 Major Nervous System Processes Input The conduction of signals from sensory receptors to integration centers in the nervous system Integration The process by which the information from the environmental stimulation of the sensory receptors is interpreted and associated with appropriate responses of the body Motor Output The conduction of signals from the processing center to the muscle cells or gland cells that actually carry out the body s responses to stimuli

10 Central and Peripheral Nervous Systems The central nervous system consists of the brain and spinal cord This is where integration occurs Made of interneurons The peripheral nervous system consists of the nerve cells that communicate signals between the CNS and the rest of the body Sensory neurons Carry info from the sensory receptors to the brain Motor neurons Carry info from the brain to effector cells (to do whatever the brain said!)

11

12 Action Potentials In order to actually TRANSMIT a signal, the voltage (charge) across the membrane has to change A signal will cause the ion channels to open, letting some of the ions (Na+, K+) through, trying to achieve EQUILIBRIUM This depolarizes the membrane This causes the signal to be passed along the neuron, which is known as an ACTION POTENTIAL (like a wave of electricity)

13 Action Potentials Action potentials are either ALL or NONE Either there is enough change in the voltage to pass the message along, or there isn t The neuron either fires or it doesn t fire If your hand is on a 100 C stove, the action potentials aren t STRONGER than if you were on a 50 C stove; they just happen MORE OFTEN

14 Resting Potential Charge difference across the plasma membrane of a neuron Fluid just outside cell is more positively charged than fluid inside because of large negatively charged proteins in the cytoplasm Potassium (K + ): Higher inside than outside Sodium (Na + ): Higher outside than inside Potential is measured in millivolts Resting potential is usually about -70mv

15 Action Potential A transitory reversal in membrane potential Voltage change causes voltage-gated channels in the membrane to open Na + leaks in (depolarization): Inside of neuron briefly becomes more positive than outside K + leaks out (repolarization): Inside goes back to being negatively charged compared to outside. Na + / K + pumps the Na + and K + back to original positions (refractory period)

16 Action Potential Na 1 + Na + Na 2 + K + K + K + K + K + K + K + Na + Na + Na + Na + Na+ 3 Na 4 +

17 All or Nothing All action potentials are the same size If stimulation is below threshold level, no action potential occurs If it is above threshold level, cell is always depolarized to the same level

18 Membrane potential (millivolts) Recording of Action Potential +20 action potential threshold -70 resting membrane potential Time (milliseconds)

19 Gap between axon of one neuron and dendrite of adjacent neuron Action potential in axon ending of presynaptic cell causes voltage-gated calcium channels to open Flow of calcium into presynaptic cell causes release of neurotransmitter into synaptic cleft Chemical Synapse synaptic vesicle plasma membrane of axon ending of presynapic cell plasma membrane of postsynapic cell synaptic cleft membrane receptor

20 Neurotransmitters Neurotransmitters are substances that carry the message across the synapse Important neurotransmitters: Acetylcholine (bridges gaps between motor neurons & muscle cells), norepinephrine, dopamine, serotonin work in CNS

21 Synaptic Transmission Neurotransmitter diffuses across cleft and binds to receptors on membrane of postsynaptic cell Binding of neurotransmitter to receptors opens ion channels in the membrane of postsynaptic cell

22 Ion Gates Open neurotransmitter receptor for neurotransmitter ions gated channel protein

23 Synaptic Transmission Enzymes in synaptic cleft will degrade neurotransmitters after action potential is initiated on the post-synaptic cell. The neurotransmitters are recycled after they are broken down. Example: Acetylcholine is broken down by the enzyme cholinesterase

24 axon Nerve myelin sheath A bundle of axons enclosed within a connective tissue sheath nerve fascicle

25 Myelin Sheath A series of Schwann cells Sheath blocks ion movements Action potential must jump from node to node; CREATES RAPID MOVEMENT OF ELECTRICAL IMPULSE

26 Multiple Sclerosis A condition in which nerve fibers lose their myelin Slows conduction Symptoms include visual problems, numbness, muscle weakness, and fatigue

27 Reflexes Automatic movements made in response to stimuli In the simplest reflex arcs, sensory neurons synapse directly on motor neurons; interneurons in CNS aren t involved. Most reflexes involve an interneuron

28 Stretch Reflex STIMULUS Biceps stretches. sensory neuron motor neuron Response Biceps contracts.

29 Central and Peripheral Nervous Systems Central nervous system (CNS) Brain Spinal cord Peripheral nervous system Nerves that thread through the body

30 Peripheral Nervous System Somatic nerves Controls skeletal muscle (voluntary) (Shown in green) Autonomic nerves _ Controls certain organs, smooth muscle & cardiac muscle (involuntary) (Shown in red)

31 Peripheral Nervous System Peripheral nervous system Somatic nervous system Autonomic nervous system Sympathetic division Parasympathetic division Enteric division

32 Two Divisions of Autonomic Nervous System Sympathetic: speeds up heart, breathing, release of sugar into blood; fight or flight response Parasympathetic: slows heart, breathing rate; causes secretion of digestive enzymes, etc. Most organs receive input from both Usually have opposite effects on organ

33

34 Structure of the Spinal Cord spinal cord vertebra ganglion nerve meninges (protective coverings)

35 Divisions of Brain Division Forebrain Midbrain Main Parts Cerebrum Olfactory lobes Thalamus Hypothalamus Limbic system Pituitary gland Pineal gland Tectum Hindbrain Pons Cerebellum Medulla oblongata anterior end of the spiral cord

36 Cerebrospinal Fluid Surrounds the spinal cord Fills ventricles within the brain Blood-brain barrier controls which solutes enter the cerebrospinal fluid

37 Anatomy of the Cerebrum Largest and most complex part of human brain (Responsible for thinking & higher level functions) Outer layer (cerebral cortex) is highly folded A longitudinal fissure divides cerebrum into left and right hemispheres Corpus collosum connects the two hemispheres

38 Lobes of the Cerebrum Primary motor cortex Primary somatosensory cortex Frontal Temporal Parietal Occipital

39 Limbic System Controls emotions and has role in memory (olfactory tract) cingulate gyrus thalamus amygdala hypothalamus hippocampus

40 Other Parts of the Brain Cerebellum - Controls muscle coordination and posture Medulla oblongata- Controls heart rate & breathing rate

41 Variations in Nervous Systems Among Animals

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