The Nervous System and Nervous Tissue

Critical Thinking Questions


What responses are generated by the nervous system when you run on a treadmill? Include an example of each type of tissue that is under nervous system control.


When eating food, what anatomical and functional divisions of the nervous system are involved in the perceptual experience?


Multiple sclerosis is a demyelinating disease affecting the central nervous system. What type of cell would be the most likely target of this disease? Why?


Which type of neuron, based on its shape, is best suited for relaying information directly from one neuron to another? Explain why.


Sensory fibers, or pathways, are referred to as “afferent.” Motor fibers, or pathways, are referred to as “efferent.” What can you infer about the meaning of these two terms (afferent and efferent) in a structural or anatomical context?


If a person has a motor disorder and cannot move their arm voluntarily, but their muscles have tone, which motor neuron—upper or lower—is probably affected? Explain why.


What does it mean for an action potential to be an “all or none” event?


The conscious perception of pain is often delayed because of the time it takes for the sensations to reach the cerebral cortex. Why would this be the case based on propagation of the axon potential?


If a postsynaptic cell has synapses from five different cells, and three cause EPSPs and two of them cause IPSPs, give an example of a series of depolarizations and hyperpolarizations that would result in the neuron reaching threshold.


Why is the receptor the important element determining the effect a neurotransmitter has on a target cell?