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Neuroanatomy & Audition

Neuroanatomy & Audition

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Neuroanatomy & Audition

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  1. Neuroanatomy & Audition June 14, 2011

  2. Zooming In Perspective

  3. What is a Neuron?

  4. Neurons • Neurons control brain function on a cellular level. • There are 100 billion neurons in human brain! • Neurons come in many shapes and sizes. • Each neuron communicates with many others to coordinate various functions of the nervous system. Image courtesy of Dr. Joshua Sanes, Harvard University, 2005

  5. “Typical” Neuron Soma (nucleus) Myelin Sheath Adapted from

  6. The Soma • Cell body • Contains • A nucleus with genetic information • Ribosomes for processing genetic information into proteins • Endoplasmic reticulum for transport of materials • Mitochondria for energy • Several other important organelles

  7. The Axon • Carries information AWAY from the Soma (Axons Away!) • Typically only 1 Axon per Neuron • Can be covered in a fatty conductive substance called Myelin • Speeds the transfer of information

  8. Dendrites • Bring information from other neurons to the soma • Rough surface covered with spines • Unmyelinated • Most neurons have MANY dendrites with extensive branching


  10. And Let’s Not Forget…Glia • Glia are non-neuronal supporting cells in the brain • Although there are many more glia than neurons in the brain, they cannot generate action potentials, and also don’t communicate with neurotransmitters. • So what DO they do?

  11. Glial Types & Functions • Astrocytes • Clean up brain debris & “eat” dead neurons • Bring nutrients to neurons • Hold neurons in place • Microglia • Digest parts of dead neurons • Oligodendrocytes • Create myelin for insulated axons • Schwann Cells • Also create myelin for insulating axons • Satellite Cells • Provide structural support for neurons located in the periphery

  12. Neuronal Modeling

  13. Brief Overview of Neuroanatomy

  14. Parietal Lobe Frontal Lobe Occipital Lobe Corpus Callosum Temporal Lobe Cerebellum Brain Stem

  15. FrontalLobe Frontal Lobe • Found behind your forehead • Involved in: • Reasoning & Planning • Some parts of speech • Movement • Emotions • Problem solving • Contains Motor Cortex Return to brain parts

  16. Parietal Lobe Parietal Lobe • Found on the top of your head • Contains Sensory Cortex • Involved in: • Touch • Pressure • Temperature • Pain • Spatial Orientation

  17. Temporal Lobe Temporal Lobe • Found on the sides of head above your ears • Contains Limbic Cortex • Involved in: • Speech perception • Hearing • Some types of memory • Emotion Return to brain parts

  18. Occipital Lobe Occipital Lobe • Found at the back of your head • Receives input from the eyes • Often referred to as the visual cortex Return to brain parts

  19. Cerebellum • Found at the at the back of your head under the cerebrum. • Means “little brain” • Involved in: • Unconscious coordination • Movement • Balance • Posture • Often takes over learned activities Cerebellum

  20. Brainstem Brainstem • Most basic part of your brain • Controls essential functions automatically • Contains 2 parts: • Medulla controls breathing, heart & blood vessel activity, digesting, eliminating waste, sleeping, maintaining body temperature… • Pons regulates breathing • Also responsible for movement Return to brain parts

  21. Cerebral Cortex

  22. Corpus Callosum Corpus Callosum • Located centrally between the left and right hemispheres of your brain. • Thick bundle of nerve fibers that connects the left and right hemispheres. • Involved in: • Creativity • Problem solving • Allows hemispheres to process information together

  23. Create a Brain!

  24. How Do Neurons Communicate?

  25. The Normal, At Rest, Condition • When the neuron is at rest, there are several important ions (+ or – charged chemicals) that are carefully balanced. • Important ions • K+ (Potassium) • Na+ (Sodium) • Cl- (Chloride) • Ca2+ (Calcium) • These ions enter and leave the neuron through ion channels and pumps.

  26. The Neuron At Rest • The balance of these ions inside and outside of the cell membrane creates a membrane potential. • For the neuron at rest, this is -70 mV. • How does the neuron achieve this?

  27. Electrical & Chemical Gradients Na+ Cl- K+ Outside Inside -70mV Na+ Cl- K+ Concentration Gradient Electrical Gradient

  28. At Rest • So at rest, the inside of the neuron is negatively charged because of the balance of ions inside and outside the cell. • What happens when a signal comes along?? • Ions move!!

  29. Action Potential: Na+ Na+ • When a stimulus occurs, Na+ channels open and Na+ rushes into the neuron, making it more positively charged. • This also passes a negative (depolarizing) current along to the next section of axon. Outside Inside -55 mV -70 mV Na+

  30. Action Potentials: All or None • If Na+ outflow causes the potential to reach -55 mV, an action potential will occur and the signal will be sent. • This is known as the threshold potential. • If the potential does not reach the threshold, no action potential will occur…thus it is an “All or None” phenomenon.

  31. Action Potential: K+ K+ • Once the action potential is generated, Na+ channels close and K+ channels open. • K+ moves slowly outward to bring the potential back to -75 mV (repolarization). Outside Inside +55 mV -75 mV K+

  32. Action Potential: Overshoot • So much K+ flows out of the neuron that the membrane potential returns to a value lower than that of its resting state. • This is called hyperpolarization. • What effect do you think this might have on the neuron’s ability to fire again and send a second message?

  33. Refractory Period • While the neuron is hyperpolarized, it cannot fire again. • This also prevents a signal from traveling backwards. • Once the neuron regains its resting membrane potential, it will be able to send a second message.

  34. Propagation • Action potential in one region of axon depolarizes the next region to pass along, or propagate, the action potential. • This process can be sped up by myelin coating on the axons. • Nodes of Ranvier: Small segments of unmyelinated axon • Action potential “jumps” from Node to Node: much speedier! • This is called saltatory conduction.

  35. Putting it All Together • At Rest: -70 mV (membrane potential) • Na+ enters the cell • If -55 mV threshold potential is reached, action potential begins • K+ leaves the cell • Cell becomes hyperpolarized (-75 mV) and is temporarily refractory. • Action potential is passed in one direction down the axon.

  36. Whew! We finally made it down the axon! Now What??

  37. We still need to get the message to the next neuron.

  38. Neurons Communicate at Synapses • Neurons talk to each other all the time, but never actually touch. • Two neurons meet at a place called the synapse. • Special chemicals called neurotransmitters carry the message across the synapse.

  39. Neurons Talk at Synapses Photo by T. Due, Harvard University, 7/2005 These C. elegan worms contain a transgene encoding unc-49 gene (GABA receptor) fused to its own promoter and GFP (Harvard Medical School) From Dr.Venkatesh N. Murthy, Harvard University, 7/2005

  40. Neurons Talk ThroughNeurotransmitters& Receptors • Neurotransmitters: • Chemicals that carry messages from one neuron to another across the synapse (messages travel really fast!) • Receptors: • Protein molecules that receive and translate the chemical message

  41. Neurotransmitters • Neurotransmitters are how the brain passes messages from one neuron to the next. • Neurotransmitters can be either: • Inhibitory (they prevent other neurons from firing) • Excitatory (they increase firing in other neurons)

  42. Neurotransmitters: GABA & Glu GABA • Primary inhibitory neurotransmitter • Involved in: • Epilepsy • Depression & Anxiety • Anesthesia Glutamate • Primary excitatory neurotransmitter • Involved in: • Epilepsy • Learning & Memory • Schizophrenia

  43. Neurotransmitters: 5-HT & NE Serotonin • Involved in: • Depression & Mood • Eating • Sleep & Wake • Pain Norepinephrine • Implicated in • Mood & Depression • Sleep & Wake • Drug Abuse • Parkinson’s Disease,Causes

  44. Dopamine Involved in: Drug Abuse Parkinson’s Disease Schizophrenia Acetylcholine Involved in: Muscular movement Nicotine Addiction Alzheimer’s Disease Neurotransmitters: DA & ACh

  45. Illustrate a Neurotransmitter

  46. Brain Beliefs June 14, 2011

  47. True or False? • The brain is static, unchanging, and set before you start school. FALSE

  48. True or False • The brain contains more supporting cells (glia) than it does neurons (cells that send signals throughout the brain). TRUE!

  49. True or False? • Prior to birth, a baby gains 250,000 neurons per minute. TRUE!

  50. True or False? • Some people are left-brained and some are right-brained. FALSE