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Zeke Merchant

BY 485 Exam 2 Study Guide

Chapter 8 Notes: The Chemical Senses

1. Intro
a. Three types of chemical senses
i. Gustation: taste, 9th cranial nerve, parietal lobe
ii. Olfaction: smell, 1st cranial nerve, bottom of frontal
iii. Chemoreceptors
2. Taste
a. Basic tastes:
i. Saltiness, sourness, sweetness, bitterness, umami
b. Basic steps to distinguish countless unique flavors of food
i. Each food activates a different combination of taste
ii. Distinctive smell
iii. Other sensory modalities
c. Involved organs
i. Tongue, mouth, palate, pharynx, and epiglottis
d. Areas of sensitivity on the tongue
i. Tip of the tongue: sweetness
ii. Back of the tongue: bitterness
iii. Side of the tongue: saltiness and sourness
e. Papillae (3 kinds)
i. Foliate: sides of tongue
ii. Vallate: middle/back of tongue
iii. Fungiform: on tip of tongue
iv. Just enough exposure for one papillae is necessary
for threshold
f. Taste receptor cells:
i. Apical ends, microvilli, to taste pore
ii. Receptor potential due to a voltage shift
g. Mechanisms of taste transduction:
i. Taste stimuli (tastants)
1. Pass directly through ion channels
2. Bind to and block ion channels
3. Bind to G-protein coupled receptors
ii. Saltiness: salt sensitive taste cells
1. Special Na+ channel
iii. Sourness: acidity; low pH
iv. Bitterness: families of taste receptor genes; T1R &
v. Sweetness: receptor genes; T1R2 & T1R3

vi. Umami: receptors detect amino acids T1R1 & T1R3

h. Taste Pathway:
i. Afferents from tongue and epiglottis
ii. Left gustatory nucleus
iii. Third ventricle
iv. Primary gustatory cortex
i. Neural coding of taste
i. Population coding, individual taste receptors for each
3. Smell
a. Pheromones
i. Important signals
1. Reproductive behavior, territorial boundaries,
identification, aggression
b. Organs of smell
i. Olfactory receptor cells, supporting cells, and basal
ii. Odorants: activate transduction processes in neurons
iii. Olfactory axons constitute olfactory nerve
iv. Cribriform plate: a thin sheet of bone through which
small clusters of axons penetrate, coursing to the
olfactory bulb
v. Anosmia: inability to smell
vi. Why are humans weak smellers?
1. We have a naturally smaller surface area on
the olfactory epithelium
c. Adaptation: decreased response despite constant stimulus
d. Central olfactory pathways
i. Olfactory receptor cells, olfactory epithelium,
glomerulus, olfactory bulb, olfactory tract, brain
e. Axons of the olfactory tract branch and enter the forebrain
f. Neocortex reached by a pathway that synapses in the
medial dorsal nucleus

Chapter 9 Notes: The Eye

1) Introduction
a) Retina
i) Photoreceptors: convert light energy into neural activity
(1)About 125 million photoreceptors in the eye
ii) Detects differences in intensity of light
b) Lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN): first synaptic relay in primary
visual pathway
i) Neural info ascends to cortex from here
2) Properties of Light
a) Electromagnetic radiation
b) Wavelength, frequency, amplitude
i) Gamma radiation and cool colors high energy
ii) Radio waves and hot colors low energy
c) Optics
i) 3 types of light interactions: reflection, absorption, and
ii) Diopters = refractive power = 1/focal distance
3) Structure of the Eye
a) Gross Anatomy of the Eye
i) Pupil: Opening where light enters the eye
ii) Sclera: white of the eye
iii) Iris: gives color to eyes
iv) Cornea: Glassy transparent external surface of the eye
v) Optic nerve: bundle of axons from the retina

4) Image formation by the Eye
a) Refraction of light by the cornea
i) Eye collects light, focuses it on the retina, forms images
ii) Corrective lenses refract light again to make light focus on





b) The pupillary light reflex

i) Connections between brain stem neurons and retina that
control pupil muscles
ii) Continuously adjusting
c) The Visual field: about 150 degrees per eye
i) Amount of space viewed by the eye when looking straight
d) Visual Acuity: ability to distinguish two nearby points
i) Visual angle: distance across retina described in degrees
Microscopic Anatomy of the Retina
a) Direct pathway: photoreceptors, horizontal cells, bipolar cells,
amacrine cells, ganglion cells
b) Light passes through ganglion cells, through everything else, to
photoreceptors, and then back up for response
c) Photoreceptor structure: Converts electromagnetic radiation to
neural signals
i) Four main regions: outer segment, inner segment, cell body,
and synaptic terminal
ii) Two types: rods and cones
(1)Rods are responsible for night vision
(2)Cones are responsible for perceiving color
d) Two types of retina: foveal and peripheral retina
i) Peripheral has higher ratio of rods to cones
ii) Peripheral has higher ratio of photoreceptors to ganglion cells
iii) Peripheral is more sensitive to light
e) Cross section of fovea: pit in retina where outer layers are
pushed aside
i) Maximizes visual acuity
ii) Central fovea: all cones, no rods
(1)1:1 ratio with ganglion cells
(2)Point of highest visual acuity
Phototransduction in Rods
a) Light energy reacts with photopigment creates a membrane
potential change
b) Dark current: rod outer segments depolarize in the dark due to
steady influx of Na+
c) Photoreceptors hyperpolarize in response to light energy
d) Light activated chemical cascade in photoreceptor signal
Phototransduction in Cones
a) Similar to rods, but there are different opsins: red, green, blue
b) Color detection: contributions of red, blue, green cones to retinal
signal. Each color comes in at a different frequency/wavelength
Dark and Light Adaptation
a) Affected by: dilation of pupils, regeneration of unbleached
rhodopsin, adjustment of functional circuitry

b) Calcium concentration changes in photoreceptors and indirectly

regulates levels of cGMP channels
9) Retinal Processing
a) Transformations in the outer plexiform layer
i) Photoreceptors release less neurotransmitters when
stimulated by light
b) Receptive field: on and off bipolar cells
i) Stimulation in a small part of the visual field changes a cells
membrane potential
ii) Antagonistic center-surround receptive fields

c) On center bipolar cell
i) Light on - less glutamate
ii) Light off more glutamate

10) Retinal Output
a) Ganglion cell receptive fields


iii) Magnoganglion cells: used by cones

iv) Parvoganglion cells: used by rods
b) Parallel Processing: simultaneous input from both eyes

i) Info compared in cortex

Chapter 10 Notes: The Central Visual System

1) Retinofugal Projection
a) Optic nerve optic chasm optic tract
b) Right and left visual hemifields
i) Left hemifield projects to the right side of the brain
ii) Ganglion cell axons from nasal retina cross while temporal
retinal axons stay ipsilateral
c) What happens if the left optic nerve is lesioned? Partial visual
field loss on the left side
d) What happens if the left optic tract is lesioned? Total visual field
loss on the right side
e) What happens if the optic chiasm is lesioned? Partial visual field
loss on both sides tunnel vision
2) The Lateral Geniculate Nucleus (LGN)
a) Inputs segregated by eye and ganglion cell type
b) Receptive fields: identical to ganglion cells that feed the LGN
i) Magnocellular: large receptive fields with transient response
ii) Parvocellular: small receptive fields with sustained response
3) Anatomy of the Striate Cortex
a) Retinotopy: map of the visual field on the target structure (retina,
LGN, striate cortex)

Chapter 11 Notes: The Auditory and Vestibular

1) Introduction
a) Sensory systems
i) Sense of hearing (audition)
(1)Detect sound
(2)Perceive and interpret differences
ii) Sense of balance (vestibular)
(1)Head and body location and movement
2) Structure of the Auditory System
a) Sound waves tympanic membrane ossicles oval window
cochlear fluid sensory neuron response
b) Auditory pathway
i) Spiral ganglion auditory nerve ventral cochlear nucleus
superior olive lateral lemniscus inferior colliculus
MGN (medial genticulate nucleus) Auditory cortex
c) Sound intensity
i) Firing rates of neurons
ii) Number of active neurons
3) Vestibular System: balance, equilibrium, head movement,
a) Otolith organs: gravity and tilt
b) Semicircular canals: head rotation
c) Use hair cells, like auditory system, to detect changes

Chapter 19 Notes: Brain Rhythms and Sleep

1) Rhythmic Activities of the Brain
a) Sleeping and waking, hibernation, breathing, walking, electrical
rhythms of cerebral cortex
b) Cerebral cortex: Range of electrical rhythms depending on state
of consciousness
c) EEG: Classical method of recording brain rhythms from cerebral
d) Circadian rhythms: Change in physiological functions according
to brain clock
2) The Electroencephalogram (EEG)
a) Measurement of generalized cortical activity
b) Noninvasive, painless
c) Diagnose neurological conditions such as epilepsy, sleep
disorders, research
3) EEG Rhythms
a) Categorization of rhythms based on frequency
i) Gamma: 30 Hz & up
ii) Beta: Greater than 14 Hz, activated cortex
iii) Alpha: 8-13 Hz, quiet, waking state
iv) Theta: 4-7 Hz, some sleep states
v) Delta: Less than 4 Hz, deep sleep
b) Deep Sleep
i) High synchrony, high EEG amplitude
4) Seizures and Epilepsy
a) Epilepsy: Repeated seizures
b) Causes: Tumor, trauma, infection, vascular disease, many cases
c) Generalized: Entire cerebral cortex, complete behavior
disruption, consciousness loss
d) Partial: Circumscribed cortex area, abnormal sensation or aura
e) Absence: Less than 30 sec of generalized, 3 Hz EEG waves
5) Circadian rhythms: internal clock run by rhythmic
a) circa = approximately; dies = a day
b) Daily cycles of light and dark
c) Schedules of circadian rhythms vary among species
d) Physiological and biochemical processes in body: Rise and fall
with daily rhythms
e) Daylight and darkness cycles removed, circadian rhythms
f) Brain clocks

Chapter 20 Notes: Language

1) Aphasia
a) Partial/complete loss of language abilities following brain damage
2) Brocas Area and Wernickes Area
a) Brocas area (Paul Broca 1864: Region of dominant left frontal
lobe, articulate speech
b) Wernickes area (Karl Wernicke 1874): Superior surface of
temporal lobe between auditory cortex and angular gyrus,
lesions disrupt normal speech
3) Brocas Aphasia (motor, nonfluent aphasia)
a) Difficulty speaking, but understand spoken/heard language
b) Paraphasic errors
c) Pause to search for words, repeat overlearned things, difficulty
repeating words
4) Wernickes aphasia, fluent speech, poor comprehension
a) Howard Gardner case study
i) Strange mixture of clarity and gibberish
ii) Correct sounds, incorrect sequence
iii) difficult to assess
iv) Playing music, writing similar
b) Storing memories of sounds that make up words
c) Symptoms: Mixture of clarity and gibberish, undisturbed by
sound of own or others speech
d) Characteristics: Correct words in incorrect sequence, incorrect
word similar to correct word
5) Conduction Aphasia
a) Lesion of fibers composing arcuate fasciculus
b) Comparison with Brocas aphasia, Wernickes aphasia:
Comprehension good, speech fluent
c) Difficulty repeating words
d) Symptoms: Repetition substitutes/omits words, paraphasic
errors, cannot repeat function, nonsense words, polysyllabic
6) Aphasia in Bilinguals and the Deaf
a) Aphasia in bilinguals- Language affected depends on: Order,
fluency, use of language
b) Sign language aphasias analagous to speech aphasias but can
be produced by lesions in slightly different locations
c) Verbal and sign language recovered together in one case
indicating overlapping regions used for both
d) Evidence suggests some universality to language processing in
the brain
7) The Effects of Brain Stimulation on Language
a) Three main effects: Vocalizations, speech arrest, speech
difficulties similar to aphasia
b) Motor cortex: Immediate speech arrest

c) Brocas area: Speech stopped after strong stimulation, speech

hesitation from weak stimulation
d) Posterior parietal lobe near Sylvian fissure and temporal lobe:
Word confusion and speech arrest
e) George Ojemann: Small parts of cortex: naming, reading,
repeating facial movements

Chapter 21 Notes: Attention

1. Introduction
a. Attention: State of selectively processing simultaneous
sources of information
2. How is attention directed?
a. Cortical, subcortical areas
i. Modulate the activity of neurons in sensory cortex areas
b. The Pulvinar Nucleus
i. Guiding attention

Visual Prosthetics
1. Locations for visual prosthetics
a. Retina
i. Goes on ganglion cell (output of the eye)
1. Can be superganglion (on top of ganglion)
2. Can be inferiorretina (behind scalara)
b. Optic nerve
i. Cuff, sieve, penetrating electrodes
c. Visual Cortex
i. ECoG, can go in from scalp, use fine wire