The influence of the Body on Behavior The Phinneus P. Gage Story • Back in the 1800’s, there was a man named Phinneus P. Gage who was working on a railroad. His job was to use explosives to blow away ground so that they could lay track. He was generally considered a kind and gentle man. One day an accident happened and the tamping rod was blown clean through his head. Surprisingly he did not die, but he did show a complete personality change. He became a drunk, was violent, and completely irresponsible. This led to an interest in how the brain controls behavior and personality.
What is the difference between the mind and the brain? How can we scientifically answer that question?
So, because Gage’s “mind” had changed AND his brain had changed…people started to investigate the connection between the 2.
Physiological Psychology • This field of study has been called physiological psychology but is now more frequently called Psychobiology, biopsychology, or neuroscience. The focus of study is generally how the brain controls all aspects of our behavior.
The Nervous System is what processes information about “reality” • The Nervous System is never at rest…It is always regulating your body functions. • There are 2 primary parts to the structure of the Nervous System: • 1.) Central Nervous System (CNS): The Brain and Spinal Cord. Note: The spinal cordis comprised of nerves that run up and down the length of the back and transmit most messages between the body and the brain. • 2.) Peripheral Nervous System (PNS): Nerves branching out from the spinal cord.
Peripheral Nervous System has 2 parts • Somatic NS- control’s skeletal muscles • Autonomic NS- controls glands and muscles of internal organs (breathing, blood pressure and digestive) • Sympathetic- “fight of flight” • Parasympathetic – calms you down.
How the Nervous System Works • Messages to and from the brain travel along the nerves, which are long, thin cells called neurons. • Neurons: The long, thin cells of nerve tissue along which messages travel to and from the brain. • The Neurons consist of 3 basic parts: - 1.) The Cell Body: is the main, or center part of the neuron. It contains the nucleus and produces the energy needed to fuel neuron activity.
How the Nervous System Works - 2.) The Axon: a tail like structure that carries information away from the cell body. - 3.) The Dendrites: are usually small, short thin fibers that stick out from the cell body. They receive impulses, or messages, from other neurons and send them to the cell body.
Parts of the Neuron - Dendrites Dendrite – The branching extensions of a neuron that receive information and conduct impulses toward the cell body
Parts of the Neuron - Axon Axon – The extension of a neuron through which neural impulses are sent
Parts of the Neuron - Terminals Axon terminals – The endpoint of a neuron where neurotransmitters are stored
Are all Neurons connected? • In order for the nervous system to properly function, there must be a space between each neuron. This space is called a synapse. • Synapse:The fluid-filled gap that exists between individual nerve cells.
How do the Neurons Transmit Information? • Action Potential: Neurons transmit messages in the form of electrochemical impulses called an action potential. Let’s form a line
Who is the quickest in the room? • Can you catch my pen?
Continued… • These messages are transmitted by the releasing of chemicals called “neurotransmitters.” • Neurotransmitters:The chemicals released by neurons, which determine the rate at which other neurons fire. • Watch this and this
How do the Neurotransmitters make us feel a certain way? The communication between neurons occurs in special PATHWAYS in different areas of the brain. These different PATHWAYS create different sensations/feelings/thoughts due to the regions in the brain they occur in
How do the Neurotransmitters make us feel a certain way? Dopamine Pathway Serotonin Pathway
What do drugs do? • Some act as Agonists • Agonists mimic neurotransmitters • Some act as Antagonists • Antagonists block neurotransmitters • Here are some examples of how it works • Here is an activity sheet to go with it
The Structure of the Brain • The Human Brain is VERY Complex. It is still widely considered to be the most complex structure ever discovered or created by man. • There are approximately 10 billion nerve cells in the brain and each one has the potential to contact every other one. • There is however, NO relationship between brain size and intelligence. • What does relate to intelligence are the fissures, wrinkles, and folds of the brain. No animal has as many of these folds (convolutions) as a human except the porpoise.
The Structure of the Brain • Oxygen Consumption: The brain needs oxygen to survive. The brain contributes about 1/50th of your body weight yet consumes 25% of your oxygen. • Deprivation of oxygen to the brain will lead to you passing out in 15 seconds and brain damage within 4 minutes.
The Structure of the Brain • Important: There are NO pain receptors in the brain. If you have a headache it is usually due to dilation of the blood vessels that surround the brain. • In other words, your brain cannot feel pain, but the blood vessels and nerve system that surround it can.
Think of the brain as a house Then they finished the top After a while, this was built Then this was built This was built 1st
The Structure of the Brain • The Brain Stem: Our basic body processes are mediated in the brain stem, the portion of the brain just above the spinal cord. • This is the bottom floor
The Lobes of the Brain • The brain is divided into 2 hemispheres (right and left). The 2 hemispheres are divided by a band of fibers called the “corpus callosum.” • The brain also has 4 areas, or lobes. Lobes are the different regions that the brain is divided into. • 1.) The Occipital Lobe: This is where the visual signals are processed. It is located in the back of your brain.
2.) The Parietal Lobe: This is where information from sensors all over the body is processed. • 3.) The Temporal Lobe: This is where your hearing, memory, emotion, and speaking functions are processed. • 4.) The Frontal Lobe: Is concerned with organization, planning, and creative thinking. (I wonder where it is located.)
Left and Right Hemispheres • There are many myths about the differences between the left and right hemispheres of the brain. You may have heard of people being “right or left brained” before…This is exaggerated. • In reality, the left and right side merely compliment one another. • Right = Left….Left = Right…whaaaaaaaa?
Hemispheric Differences • Brain is divided into two hemispheres but works as a single entity. • Both sides continually communicate via the corpus callosum, except in those with split brains. • There are some specializations and functions but the 2 work hand-in-hand
The Brain’s Left Hemisphere • For most people, language functions are in the left hemisphere. -uses logic-detail oriented-facts rule-words and language-present and past-math and science-can comprehendknowing -Acknowledges order/pattern perception-knows object name-reality based-forms strategies-practical-safe
The Brain’s Right Hemisphere • Houses the brain’s spatial abilities • Our spatial ability allows us to perceive or organize things in a given space, judge distance, etc. -uses feeling-"big picture" oriented-imagination rules-symbols and images
Let’s watch a few little videos Split Brain Video What is the effect of a placebo on the brain? What does that mean regarding the mind/ brain connection?
Various Instruments are used to examine the brain CAT scans and MRI scans examine structure of the brain. To examine the function of the brain, we use other devices.
The Electroencephalograph… • Wow that’s a long word…How about EEG machine. • What is it? • It is a machine used to record the electrical activity of large portions of the brain. • Wires are connected to various areas of your scalp, allowing the rhythms, or brain waves caused by the neurons to be read.