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Lower-Level Brain Structures: Module 8: The Brain.

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Presentation on theme: "Lower-Level Brain Structures: Module 8: The Brain."— Presentation transcript:

1 Lower-Level Brain Structures: Module 8: The Brain

2 Brainstem The oldest part of the brain The oldest part of the brain Is responsible for automatic survival functions Is responsible for automatic survival functions Located where the spinal cord swells and the brain just begins Located where the spinal cord swells and the brain just begins

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4 Medulla The base of the brainstem The base of the brainstem Controls life-supporting functions like heartbeat and breathing Controls life-supporting functions like heartbeat and breathing Damage to this area can lead to death. Damage to this area can lead to death.

5 Reticular Formation A nerve network extending up and down the spinal cord into the brain A nerve network extending up and down the spinal cord into the brain Controls an organism’s level of alertness Controls an organism’s level of alertness Damage to this area can cause a coma. Damage to this area can cause a coma.

6 Thalamus Sits atop the brainstem Sits atop the brainstem The brain’s sensory switchboard -- directs messages to the sensory receiving areas in the cortex The brain’s sensory switchboard -- directs messages to the sensory receiving areas in the cortex

7 Cerebellum Latin for the “little brain” Latin for the “little brain” Located in the rear of the brain Located in the rear of the brain Helps coordinate voluntary movements and balance Helps coordinate voluntary movements and balance If damaged, the person could perform basic movements but would lose fine coordination skills. If damaged, the person could perform basic movements but would lose fine coordination skills.

8 Limbic System A ring of structures around the thalamus; at the border of the brainstem and cerebral cortex A ring of structures around the thalamus; at the border of the brainstem and cerebral cortex Helps regulate memory, aggression, fear, hunger, and thirst Helps regulate memory, aggression, fear, hunger, and thirst Includes the hypothalamus, hippocampus, and amygdala Includes the hypothalamus, hippocampus, and amygdala

9 Hypothalamus Located directly under the front of the thalamus Located directly under the front of the thalamus Regulates eating, drinking, body temperature, and the fight or flight reactions to stress Regulates eating, drinking, body temperature, and the fight or flight reactions to stress Plays a role in emotions, pleasure, and sexual function Plays a role in emotions, pleasure, and sexual function

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11 Hippocampus Wraps around the back of the thalamus Wraps around the back of the thalamus Plays a role in processing new memories for permanent storage Plays a role in processing new memories for permanent storage Looks something like a seahorse Looks something like a seahorse Hippo is Greek for “horse.” Hippo is Greek for “horse.”

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13 Amygdala Two almond shaped structures Two almond shaped structures Controls emotional responses such as fear and anger Controls emotional responses such as fear and anger

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15 The Cerebral Cortex Module 8: The Brain

16 Cerebral Cortex The body’s ultimate control and information processing center The body’s ultimate control and information processing center Covers the brain’s lower level structures Covers the brain’s lower level structures Contains an estimated 30 billion nerve cells Contains an estimated 30 billion nerve cells Divided into four lobes Divided into four lobes

17 Corpus Callosum The large band of neural fibers that connects the two brain hemispheres and carries messages between them The large band of neural fibers that connects the two brain hemispheres and carries messages between them Is sometimes cut to prevent seizures Is sometimes cut to prevent seizures

18 Longitudinal Fissure The crevice that divides the brain into two halves or hemispheres The crevice that divides the brain into two halves or hemispheres This and other fissures in the brain create major divisions in the brain called lobes This and other fissures in the brain create major divisions in the brain called lobes

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21 Frontal Lobes The portion of the cerebral cortex lying just behind the forehead The portion of the cerebral cortex lying just behind the forehead Is involved in making plans and judgments Is involved in making plans and judgments

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23 Parietal Lobes Regions available for general processing, including mathematical reasoning Regions available for general processing, including mathematical reasoning Designated as the association lobes Designated as the association lobes Behind the frontal lobes Behind the frontal lobes

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25 Occipital Lobe The primary visual processing area The primary visual processing area Located in the back of the head Located in the back of the head

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27 Temporal Lobes Includes the auditory cortex where sound information is processed Includes the auditory cortex where sound information is processed Located roughly above the ears Located roughly above the ears

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29 Cerebral Cortex

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33 Motor Cortex Area at the rear of the frontal lobes Area at the rear of the frontal lobes Controls voluntary movement Controls voluntary movement Different parts of the cortex control different parts of the body. Different parts of the cortex control different parts of the body. The motor cortex in the left hemisphere controls the right side of the body and visa versa. The motor cortex in the left hemisphere controls the right side of the body and visa versa.

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36 Somatosensory Cortex Located in the front of the parietal lobes Located in the front of the parietal lobes Registers and processes body senses Registers and processes body senses Soma is Greek for “body.” Soma is Greek for “body.”

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39 Hemispheric Differences Module 8: The Brain

40 Hemispheric Differences “Left-brained” and “right-brained” pop psychology “Left-brained” and “right-brained” pop psychology Brain is divided into two hemispheres but works as a single entity. 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. Both sides continually communicate via the corpus callosum, except in those with split brains.

41 Hemispheric Differences: Language and Spatial Abilities Module 8: The Brain

42 The Brain’s Left Hemisphere For most people, language functions are in the left hemisphere. For most people, language functions are in the left hemisphere. For a small percentage of people, language functions are in the right hemisphere. For a small percentage of people, language functions are in the right hemisphere.

43 Broca’s Area Located in the frontal lobe and usually in the left hemisphere Located in the frontal lobe and usually in the left hemisphere Responsible for the muscle movements of speech Responsible for the muscle movements of speech If damaged the person can form the ideas but cannot express them as speech If damaged the person can form the ideas but cannot express them as speech

44 PET Scan of Broca’s Area

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46 Broca’s Area This is the brain of “Tal” from whom Broca discovered the area for speech. Note the damage to Broca’s Area.

47 Wernicke’s Area Located in the temporal lobe Located in the temporal lobe Involved in language comprehension and expression; our ability to understand what is said to us Involved in language comprehension and expression; our ability to understand what is said to us Usually in the left temporal lobe Usually in the left temporal lobe

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49 PET Scan of Wernicke’s Area

50 The Brain’s Right Hemisphere Houses the brain’s spatial abilities Houses the brain’s spatial abilities Our spatial ability allows us to perceive or organize things in a given space, judge distance, etc. Our spatial ability allows us to perceive or organize things in a given space, judge distance, etc. Helps in making connections between words Helps in making connections between words

51 Brain Specialization

52 Brain Plasticity Module 8: The Brain

53 Plasticity The ability of the brain tissue to take on new functions The ability of the brain tissue to take on new functions Greatest in childhood Greatest in childhood Important if parts of the brain are damaged or destroyed Important if parts of the brain are damaged or destroyed


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