Neuroscience: A Historical Introduction by Mitchell Glickstein

By Mitchell Glickstein

This advent to neuroscience is exclusive in its emphasis on how we all know what we all know concerning the constitution and serve as of the frightened approach. What are the observations and experiments that experience taught us concerning the mind and spinal wire? The booklet lines our present neuroscientific wisdom to many and sundry resources, together with historic observations at the position of the spinal wire in posture and stream, nineteenth-century neuroanatomists' descriptions of the character of nerve cells, physicians' makes an attempt all through heritage to correlate the positioning of a mind harm with its signs, and experiments at the brains of invertebrates. After an summary of the mind and its connections to the sensory and motor structures, Neuroscience discusses, between different themes, the constitution of nerve cells; electric transmission within the worried process; chemical transmission and the mechanism of drug motion; sensation; imaginative and prescient; listening to; flow; studying and reminiscence; language and the mind; neurological illness; character and emotion; the therapy of psychological ailment; and recognition. It explains the occasionally baffling Latin names for mind subdivisions; discusses the position of know-how within the box, from microscopes to EEGs; and describes the various sorts of medical discovery. The book's novel standpoint bargains a very potent method for college students to benefit approximately neuroscience. It additionally makes it transparent that previous contributions supply a precious consultant for considering the puzzles that remain.

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Even when they are stained and viewed under the microscope, it is usually impossible to sort out individual axons and trace them to their connections with other nerve cells. Degeneration Methods Clearly, mapping nerve fibers required methods to allow the anatomist to distinguish one axon from another and to follow that axon through a maze of nerve cells. One way to identify the course of a group of nerve fibers was through degeneration methods, which are based on the fact that neurons in the brain and spinal cord and their myelin coating ordinarily degenerate and die if they are damaged.

In the case of the human spinal cord, anterior is sometimes used instead of ventral, and posterior is sometimes used in preference to dorsal. We can practice these directional terms with some structures whose names we have already learned. The midbrain is rostral to the pons. The spinal cord is caudal to the medulla. The cerebellum is dorsal to the pons and medulla. The Cerebral Cortex The uniqueness of the human brain resides principally in the folds and fissures of the cerebral cortex. This crumpled covering of the gray matter of nerve cells is a total of about 2 to 4 mm deep and conventionally divided into six layers.

The lobes, which take their respective names from prominent nearby bones in the skull, are: • Occipital lobe, at the back of the head, contains the visual cortex, which receives fibers relaying visual sensations originating in the eyes. • Parietal lobe, in front of the occipital lobe, further processes visual signals and also monitors touch and awareness of the location of the body in space. Overview of the Nervous System 25 • Temporal lobe, next to the temple, has areas concerned with hearing and the understanding of language and the processing as well as storage of visual memory for objects and faces.

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