Unit 2 Notes

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Nerve Impulses

(1) Nerve Impulses
• What is it?
– Messages sent to and from neurons – Used to respond to stimuli – Ultimately maintains homeostasis

• Nerve Impulse = Electrical Current
– Comes from the flow of positively charged ions – Ions move across the neuron’s membrane

(2) Neuron Membranes & Ions
• Sodium & Potassium Pumps:
– In the membrane of neurons – Only open when stimulated by neurotransmitter – Na+ on the outside – K+ on the inside

• Ions:
– Charged particles – Sodium = Na+ = Positive Charge – Potassium = K+ = Positive Charge – Movement of Ion = Movement of Charges = Electrical Current

(3) Neuron Resting Potential
• Resting Potential: The natural charge distribution across a neuron’s membrane. • K+ channel a little “loose”:
– Some K+ leaks OUT of the neuron – Build up of MORE positive ions outside of the membrane • Inside = More Negative, Outside = More Positive • Membrane = Polarized = Imbalance

(4) Depolarization & Repolarization
• Depolarization: (Remove imbalance)
– Na+ pump opens  Na+ flows inward – Depolarization  Temporary Balance – REMEMBER: In this scenario, balance is NOT normal in this part of your body! Your body will FORCE repolarization!

• Repolarization: (Imbalance Again)
– K+ pump opens  TONS of K+ flows outward – Repolarization – REMEMBER: K+ needs to be in, and Na+ out!

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/2f/Action_potential_propagation_animation.gif

(5) Action Potential
• Action Potential = Movement of Na+ and K+ ions in and out (across) the neuron membrane. • Process:
– Cycle of depolarization + repolarization – Stimulus  Opening of Na+ Pumps  Movement Inward of Na+  Depolarization & Shutting of Na+ Pumps – Depolarization  Opening of K+ Pumps  Movement Outward of K+  Repolarization & Shutting of K+ Pumps

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=90cj4NX87Yk&NR=1

(6) Regaining Resting Potential
• Action Potential caused Na+ to be on the inside, and K+ to be on the outside.
– Change = NOT NORMAL – Not Normal  Homeostasis kicks in!

• Na+ and K+ Pumps Actively Transport (using ATP) Na+ and K+ back out/in of the axon
– Na+ pushes out – K+ pushes in – Resting Potential regained

(7) Myelin & Action Potential
• Myelin = Insulation along axon • Creates “gaps” between Na+ and K+ pumps in membrane…
– “Gaps”  electrical jumping – Ions fly down to the next set of pumps – Increases Speed of Current / Impulse

(8) Reflexes
• Rapid, Unpredictable and involuntary responses to stimuli. • Reflex Arcs:
– Pathway which reflex messages are sent. 1- Stimulus & Receptor 2- Message sent in thru Sensory Neuron 3- Integration at CNS 4- Action message sent out Motor Neuron 5- Effector Organ responds

(9) Types of Reflexes
• Somatic:
– Stimulation of skeletal muscle – Movement of limbs, torso, etc.

• Autonomic:
– Stimulation of smooth muscle, heart and glands – Causes secretion of saliva, pupil dilation, etc.