Nervous system –Thousands of stimuli constantly bombard an animal, and its survival depends onidentifying these stimuli and responding appropriately. –Stimuli within body include internal signals such as hunger or fluctuation in blood pressure.
Stimuli from the outside world include changes in temperature, light, odour or movement that may indicate the presence of predator or of prey.
Mammalian nervous system can be divided into two:
central nervous system
peripheral nervous system.
Central nervous system (CNS) –CNS consists of brain and spinal cord. –Neurons that transmit information to the CNS are called afferent neurons or sensory neuron.
Afferent neurons generally transmit information to interneurons or associationneurons in CNS. –Integration involves sorting of and interpreting incoming sensory information anddetermining the appropriate response. –Neural messages are transmitted from the CNS by efferent neurons or motor neurons. –Action by effectors is the actual response to the stimulus.Peripheral nervous system (PNS) –PNS consists of cranial nerves and spinal nerves. –Cranial nerves connect the brain with locations mostly in organs of the head andupper body. –Spinal nerves run between the spinal cord and parts of the body below the head. –Efferent branch of the PNS consists of two functional components: motor systemand autonomic nervous system. –Motor system consists of neurons that carry signals to skeletal muscles.(voluntary) –Autonomic nervous system regulates the internal environment by controllingsmooth and cardiac muscles and the organs of digestive, cardiovascular, excretoryand endocrine systems. (involuntary) –There are two divisions of autonomic nervous systems: sympathetic division and parasympathetic division. –Activation of sympathetic division corresponds to arousal and energy generation. –Activation of parasympathetic division generally cause opposite response that promote calming and return to self-maintenance function.