Question: Phrenology is a long-discredited “science” that purported to link bumps on the head to personality traits. Phrenology did, however, foreshadow a major concept in physiological psychology that’s still valued today; early findings in support of this came from the studies of Dr. Paul Broca, and the effects of Phineas Gage’s injury on his personality. What were the findings of Dr. Broca, and how did Gage’s behavior change? What is the major concept that these seminal early findings demonstrate?
Question: Describe the ionic basis of the RMP. Be sure to include the physical forces that contribute to the movement of ions across the membrane, the role of various ion channels and pumps, and the relative concentrations of potassium, sodium, calcium, and chloride on the intercellular and extracellular sides of the cell membrane.
Question: Explain the sequence of events that underlie an action potential. Be sure to include all relevant ion channels, and the activity of each one during each of the major phases of the action potential.
Question: Describe the sequence of events that underlie synaptic transmission, beginning with the arrival of an action potential at the axon terminal, and ending with the generation of an EPSP in the dendritic spine.
Question: If there was a drug that blocked the reuptake of dopamine, what would that do to the concentration of dopamine in the synaptic cleft? What about a drug that increased the probability that dopamine-containing vesicles would be exocytosed following an action potential?
Question: If there was a drug that prevented the inactivation of voltage gated sodium channels, and it was administered to an animal, what effect would it have on neuronal excitability and on behavior? Why?
Question: If there was a drug that blocked voltage-gated potassium channels, what effect would that have on the action potential? Why?
Question: If there was a drug that prolonged the opening of the GABA-A receptor ion channel, what effect would that have on neuronal excitability? Why?