Acetylcholine - Amygdala - Axon - Blue Spot - Brain - Brainstem - Brainstorm - Brainteaser - Central
Nervous System - Cerebellum - Cerebral
Cortex - Cerebrospinal Fluid - Corpus
Callosum - Dendrite - Dopamine - Endorphins - GABA - Glia - Growth Factor - Hemispheres - Hippocampus - Hypothalamus - Intuition - Limbic Region - Lobes - Medulla Oblongata - Memory - Morphing - Nanotechnology - Nerve Fiber - Neuron Parts - Neuron - Neurotransmitters - Nucleus - Olfactory Bulb - Optic Nerve - Peptides - Peripheral Nervous System - Purkinje
Cell - Pyramidal Cell - Scans - Serotonin - Skull - Smell - Soma - Spinal Cord - Stroop
Effect - Sulcus - Synapse - Taste - Thalamus - Ventricles - Vision
Acetylcholine - The neurotransmitter
involved in regulating muscles, memory, mood, sleep, and organs (like the
Amygdala - An almond-shaped
cluster of small structures near the limbic region. The amygdala plays a key
role in regulating emotions like anger, fear, love, and sadness.
Axon - The extended part of a neuron
that carries an impulse towards the synapse and transmits the message to other
Blue spot - The Locus Coeruleus
is a pair of identical nuclei (clusters of neurons) in the pons from which
all brain connections using norepinephrine arise; it is active during conditions
requiring attention and mental focus and goes to sleep during sleep.
Brain - The organ of your body
located inside your skull. Your brain is responsible for everything you think,
feel, see, hear, do, and remember. How your brain works determines a lot of
things about your life. No one can live without a functioning brain.
Brainstem - Oldest part of
the brain. The Brain Stem regulates things like heart rate, breathing, swallowing,
digestion, blinking, and more.
Brainstorm - When you think
of many different ideas, and sort them out later.
Brainteaser - A question
or puzzle to challenge your mind.
Central Nervous System - Your brain and spinal cord make up the central nervous system.
Cerebellum - Located in the
back of the brain, your cerebellum is a busy switching station. It receives
messages from most of the muscles and joints in your body. It communicates
with the other parts of the brain, and then sends messages about movement
and balance back to your body. It's also very active in learned skills, such
as riding a bike.
Cerebral Cortex - The
Cerebral Cortex is the largest part of your brain. It does a lot of brain
work, like thinking, decisions, and creativity. It's responsible for thinking
and learning as well as the five senses, memory and emotion. It covers much
of the rest of your brain like a thinking cap.
Cerebrospinal fluid - Clear fluid that fills in all of the spaces between the parts of your brain.
It gives the brain a cushion.
Corpus Callosum - A bridge
of nerve fibers that connect the two hemispheres of the Cerebral Cortex.
Dendrite - A branch-like part
of a neuron that receives impulses and information from other neurons.
Dopamine - A neurotransmitter
important in helping to regulate physical movement, pleasure, and thought
and is missing in patients with Parkinson's Disease.
Endorphins - A family of neuro-transmitters.
There are several different kinds (sometimes called an opioid) that helps
to ease pain and cause sleepiness.
GABA - Gamma-amino-butyric acid,
a neurotransmitter that inhibits synapse action, which can be important if
your brain is overreacting to a stimulus.
Glia - Means "glue." The cells of
your brain that are not neurons or blood vessel cells. These cells help to
hold the rest of your brain cells together.
Growth Factor - Various
substances that help axons grow in specific directions to form specific connections.
Very important as a possible means to repair brains damaged by stroke, trauma,
and maybe drugs and diseases.
Hemispheres - The two halves
of the Cerebral Cortex. These hemispheres are separate but connected. The
left side of your brain connects to the right side of your body, while the
right brain connects to the left side. In most people, the left brain handles
words and logic, and the right brain is better at art, music, and intuition.
The two hemispheres are connected by the Corpus Callosum.
Hippocampus - Structure in
the limbic region that helps to store and process memories, and then helps
to find them when you want to remember something. It can also affect emotions.
Hypothalamus - A thumb sized
region deep in the middle of the brain that monitors the body's internal functions
and helps regulate things like hunger, thirst, body temperature, and hormones.
Intuition - What you feel when
you feel that something is right or wrong, even though you're not sure why
Limbic Region - The limbic
area of your brain has many parts. They are important to your memory, emotions,
smell, and hunger. They also help determine how you respond to danger.
Lobes - The four areas of the Cerebral
Cortex. The frontal lobe, temporal lobe, parietal lobe, and occipital lobe
all work together, but each of them also does special things.
- Frontal: thought, decision, feeling, moving
- Temporal: hearing, speaking, learning
- Parietal: touch, language, moving
- Occipital: vision
Medulla Oblongata -
A part of the brainstem that regulates breathing, heartbeat, and blood flow.
Memory - An amazing function of
your brain that scientists are still trying to understand. When you remember
something, it's not like finding a snapshot in your brain. Instead, your brain
has to construct pieces of the memory from different clues. It's easier to
remember events that you had strong feelings about.
Morphing - Changing from one
shape to another.
Nanotechnology - The science
of creating highly miniaturized machines that work on the molecular level.
Nerve Fiber - Collections
of many axons growing along side each other on their way to other parts of
the body or brain.
Neuron Parts - A neuron has
three main parts. The nucleus is the center of the cell. The axon sends messages
to other neurons. The dendrites receive messages from other neurons.
Neuron - Your brain is made up
nerve cells called neurons. Neurons are the building blocks of your brain.
They are constantly communicating with each other. The connections among the
billions of neurons in all the different parts of your brain is what makes
your brain work. Your brain is estimated to have 100 billion neurons. You
can't grow new neurons so take care of the ones that you have.
Neurotransmitters are the messengers that travel between one brain cell and
another. They are chemical signals that neurons use to talk to each other,
which is what makes your brain work. They help determine how you feel, think,
Nucleus - A term used two ways
in brain studies: 1) as the central part of a neuron or other types of cells
where genetic information is stored and put into action; 2) a cluster of neurons
within a discrete location in the brain, like the locus coeruleus.
Olfactory Bulb - The olfactory
bulb receives and processes smells. It is located very close to the limbic
region, which is thought to be the reason that certain smells can activate
vivid memories and emotions.
Optic Nerve - Fibers that
connect the retina in the eye to the brain.
Peptides - Some peptides function
as neurotransmitters that often act as helper signals with other neurotransmitters
in ways similar to how the endorphins help to regulate the feeling of pain.
Can be found all over the brain.
System - The nerves that connect your spinal cord to the rest of your
Purkinje cell - A special
kind of neuron. They look like big oak trees, with more branches than any
kind of nerve cell. The Cerebellum uses lots of Purkinje cells to coordinate
Pyramidal Cells - Pyramid
shaped cells of the cerebral cortex and hippocampus with long connections
to other neurons of the cortex and other brain regions.
Scans - Brain scans use computerized
x-rays and magnetic fields to show the parts of the brain. The scans give
doctors and scientists a picture of how the brain is working. Some of the
different kinds of scans are:
- CAT scan: Computerized Axial Tomography
- EEG: Electroencephalograph
- MRI: Magnetic Resonance Imaging
- PET: Positron Emission Tomography
Serotonin - A neurotransmitter
that is involved in mood (such as helping you to feel happy), sleep, mental
health, blood pressure and heartbeat.
Skull - The bone surrounding your
brain that acts like a helmet, helping to protect your brain.
Smell - Odors drift into the nose
and cause the smell receptors to send messages to the brain. The smell part
of the brain is in the limbic region, and is connected to feeling and memory.
Soma - Another name for the neuron's
main cellular space, containing the cytoplasm that surrounds the nucleus and
extends into the dendrites and axons.
Spinal Cord - Nerve fibers
that carry instructions to the rest of your body. These nerve fibers connect
all the parts of your body to your brain, telling your body what to do. The
spinal cord is your body's information superhighway to and from the skin,
muscles, and joints.
Stroop Effect - What happens
when you read a word like "blue" that is written in green ink, causing your
brain to get confused.
Sulcus - A deep crease between
the ridges of your cerebral cortex. The large channel separating your frontal
and parietal lobes is called the Central Sulcus.
Synapse - The connection between
brain cells. The synapse is a tiny space where two neurons meet and messages
are communicated by way of neurotransmitters.
Taste - There are ten thousand
taste buds in the mouth. Molecules of taste stimulate the taste receptors
to send messages to the brain. The sweet and salty buds are the least sensitive,
and the bitter ones the most sensitive.
Thalamus - Rounded structure
in the middle region of the brain that relays sensory signals to the Cerebral
Cortex. Only a very small part of the thalamus is in any way related to the
limbic structure set.
Ventricles - Hollow spaces
in your brain that are filled with cerebrospinal fluid.
Vision - Eyes gather visual information,
which is sent to your brain to be processed and understood. The retina, in
the back of your eye, has special cells called rods and cones that are sensitive
to light. These are nerve cells, so the retina is actually part of your brain!
The rods sense brightness and the cones sense color.