Chapter 29 Neural cOntrol

The Nervous System

The nervous system is divided in different branches that carry out specific tasks that allow the brain to identify feelings and impulses from around the body.

Central Nervous System (CNS) - consists of the braina and chord, receives information from the Peripheral Nervous System and transmits them to the brain which interprets them.

Peripheral Nervous System (PNS) - consists of nerves extending from the brain and spinal chord, transmit messages to the CNS

The Nervous System (cont.d)

Two subdivisions of the peripheral nervous system are the somatic and the autonomic nervous systems.

Somatic Nervous System - responsible for any voluntary movements in the muscles of the body, sensory neurons can transmit messages from the eyes, ears, skin, and mouth to the peripheral nervous system

Autonomic Nervous System - responsible for involuntary functions in the body, like reflexes and heartbeat. Made up of two smaller network divisions called the sympathetic and the parasympathetic nervous system

The Nervous System (cont.d)

Sympathetic Nervous System - causes reflexes when startled, sends messages that increase heartrate, also called the "Fight or Flight Response"

Parasympathetic Nervous System - slows the body and its processes during resting periods, digestion slows down


Neurons are the cells in the nervous that transmits messages throughout the nervous system to the brain. There are three types of neurons.

Sensory Neurons - the cells that interpret outside stimuli from the environment to internal electrical impulses

Interneurons - cells that transmit electric impulses between other neurons

Motor Neurons - cells located in the spinal chord that directly relate to organs, muscles, and glands in the body

Another part of neurons is the neuromuscular junction. This synapse, or the joining of two nerve cells, forms when a motor neurons joins a muscle fiber. This is what causes your muscles to contract.


Acetylcholine is an organic compound found in the human brian and body. It acts as a neurotransmitter and allows other neurons to send messages to each other.

Ephinephrine and Norephinephrine

These are two chemicals that are released from the adrenal medulla and nervous system.

Epinephrine and Norepinephrine (cont.d)

They known as the flight and fight horomones that are released when the body is enduring extreme stress and anxiety.


A synapse is a junction between two nerve cells. There is a minuscule gap between the cells. In the gap is where many electric impulses pass by way of a neurotransmitter.

White Matter

White matter is the part of the human brain that is home to bunches of nerve cell projections (axons). They connect areas of gray matter to each other and carry nerve impulses as well.

Gray Matter

Gray matter is a vitale part of the central nervous system. It is made of neuronal cell bodies that interpret impulses from white matter. This is the part of the brain that reads all messages from nerves around the body.

Cerebral Cortex

The outer layer of the cerebrum composed of gray matter. It plays a role in keeping the body consciousness, alert, and awake.

Lobes of the Brain

Frontal Lobe - the most important part of the brain, control motor function, problem solving, memory, language, judgement, impulse control, and social and sexual behavior.

Parietal Lobe - two primary function, first is controls sensation and perception and second is controls sensory imput, usually with the visual system

Temporal Lobe - controls the perception of auditory imput, like hearing

Occipital Lobe - controls visual imput and processes visual signals from the eye

The Limbic System

The Limbic System is amde up of a few different structures that include the amygdala, hippocampus, thalamus, hypothalamus, basal ganglia, and cingulate gyrus.

The amygdala controls emotions of humans, while the hippocampus controls the freation and storage of new memories. The thalamus and hypothalamus work hand in hand with changes in emotion. The cingulate gyrus coordinates sights and smells with memories and creates emotional reactions to pain and aggressive behavior. The basal ganglia is responsible for motor behavior and learning habits.

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