The study of the structure and function of the nervous system and its components.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

1
vote
2answers
3k views

What are the functions and differences between axons and dendrites?

My textbook doesn't do a very good job of pointing out what the differences between the two are. It basically mentions axons only in the same breath as the synapse (that synapses are the endings/tips ...
12
votes
1answer
164 views

Can parts of a human brain be asleep independently of each other, or vary in the times required for them to fall asleep?

I know that some birds and marine animals can continue complicated activity (swimming, flying?) while one hemisphere of their brain is asleep. I'm interested if human brain has some parts of it that ...
4
votes
1answer
46 views

Is there a type of amnesia that seperately affects long-term memory?

Is there a medical condition that affects the long term memory, but leaving the short-term and working memories totally or fairly intact?
1
vote
1answer
75 views

Eye Brain Mapping

If our eyes are separated by some kind of full proof barrier/isolation, is it possible that our brain can picture/visualize two different pictures at a time? How the brain will function in this ...
4
votes
1answer
713 views

What part of the brain controls depth perception?

Specifically the part of the brain that does depth perception based on binocular vision. I have searched all over the web and have turned up nothing. Is it the same part of the brain that processes ...
5
votes
1answer
870 views

Why do neurons have a negative resting potential?

Neurons expend the majority of their energy powering ion pumps to maintain the chemical gradients that power their electrical activity. To have a negative resting potential, neurons leak potassium ...
1
vote
1answer
97 views

Do nerve cells cause action potential in cardiac muscle?

I think the answer is no, but I am not 100% sure. If it was yes, then the dendrite of the nerve cell should each time receive a stimulus causing Na+ channels to open, when the contraction happen. ...
2
votes
1answer
328 views

Optogenetics - How do microbial opsins work?

I'm just introduced to the optogenetics method and am having some trouble grasping the genetics (of the optogenteics) part of things. So we have Retinal and Opsin that form Rhodopsin molecule that ...
3
votes
1answer
95 views

What is the difference between different brain regions

The brain is separated into different regions, and different regions perform different tasks. Well, what are the differences between these regions on the cellular/systemic level. The brain is made up ...
1
vote
2answers
85 views

Inverse of dopamine reuptake inhibitor?

The wikipedia article on the dopamine transporter gives examples of some drugs whose effects are mediated by the inhibition of the dopamine transporter, such as cocaine and amphetamines. Are there ...
2
votes
2answers
418 views

What is in the space between neurons in a brain?

When neuron animations are displayed, there are frequently seen neurons, axons arranged in a lattice with a lot of empty space between. I'm interested if there is indeed empty space in the brain, or ...
1
vote
0answers
96 views

Does brain activity generate heat gradients in the brain?

I'm reading this article on guiding axon growth using temperature gradient, and it mentions that the trajectory of growth of neuron connections can be influenced by temperature gradients as little as ...
5
votes
1answer
254 views

Cat purring: What are some possible underlying mechanisms behind purring and bone remodeling and formation?

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=why-do-cats-purr The article above says that cats purr mostly when they're wounded or under duress. They hypothesis that cats purring leads to ...
1
vote
0answers
35 views

Hippocampal regulation of hypothalamus

What is the difference between CA1-CA4 hippocampal subfields and dentate gyrus (DG) in negative regulation of hypothalamus? I`ve found only evidence that GR expression is more in CA1-2 and DG, while ...
3
votes
3answers
311 views

Why do neurones use chemical signalling at synaptic junctions?

Problem. When a neurone fires, it sends an electrical signal that jumps down the axon via the nodes of Ranvier very rapidly. At a synaptic junction, chemical brownian diffusion signalling with ...
4
votes
1answer
227 views

Why does it hurt more when you touch a nerve directly?

I am not a biologist nor know much about biology (so please explain in layman's terms) however I have always been curious as to why this is. What causes the difference in pain between touching an ...
1
vote
1answer
46 views

Are there neuronal firing artifacts produced by head movement?

I'm experimenting with a consumer-grade ElectroEncephaloGram (EEG) sensor and have created the image below using the device. Because the sensor on the device does not use a suction cup, there are a ...
5
votes
2answers
129 views

How does a pinched nerve cause pain (at the molecular level)?

Is this due to pressure differentials in the surrounding tissue? (Is it possible to have a pinched nerve without compression of the surrounding tissues, and does this cause pain?) What are the ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

Why is saltatory conduction faster than continuous conduction?

How does spacing apart sodium and potassium channels allow the action potential to travel faster down the axon? This is the reason always cited for saltatory conduction and myelination, but my mental ...
2
votes
1answer
113 views

Why do I see an inverted image of an object when I close my eyes?

If I stare at an object for a long time and close my eyes, at first I can still see the object with my eyes closed. But the image I see with my eyes closed is inverted: dark colors appear as light and ...
1
vote
0answers
139 views

Does sexual arousal inhibit functions of prefrontal cortex in human females as well as males?

I've read somewhere, that when a human male experiences sexual arousal, his prefrontal cortex and, hence, his ability to reason and make rational decisions, is being heavily inhibited. Sounds pretty ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the function of nodes of Ranvier in axons?

In a neuroscience class I'm taking, it was explained that myelin covers axons in sections, the uncovered sections are called nodes of Ranvier, and signals propagate much faster in the covered ...