Shared Flashcard Set


06 Animal Phys
Sensory Physiology
Undergraduate 3

Additional Physiology Flashcards




  1. what are sensory cells?
  2. what are the types of gated channels? -- what is chemotaxis?
  1. specialized cells for obtaining info about the env. 
  2. mechanically gated
    chemically gated-- chemotaxis:oriented movement from or away a chemical stimulus

Three primary roles of sensors:

  1. exteroreceptors: what type of signals do they detect?
    what is somesthetic sensation?
    what are the special senses they're assoc. with?
  2. Interoreceptors: what type of signals do they detect?
  3. Proprioreceptors: what do they detect?
  1. detect external signals such as light, chemicals, etc
    -somesthetic sensation: from body surface (touch, pain, pos. of the limbs, etc.); vision, hearing, taste, and smell
  2. detect internal body signals such as blood pressure
  3. detect animals position in space
  1. Perception is the interpretation of the external world as created by ____ from  ___ ___ delivered by ___ __?
  2. Our perception of the world is incomplete b/c:
    -we (humans) can only detected a limited # of __?
    -we perceive ... (8)?
    -we DO NOT perceive ... (4)?
    -what happens to the information we receive and why? 
  1. created by the brain from nerve impulses delivered by sensory receptors
  2. limited # of energy forms
  3. sounds, colors, shapes, textures, smells, tastes, deformations, and temp
  4. magnetic forces, electrical forces, polarized light waves, or UV light waves
  5. info is filtered or modified b/c: filtered at receptor, brainstem, or cortex and brain can hide or distort the truth
  1. what is a stimulus?
  2. modality?
  3. receptor? 
  4. transduction? 
  5. adequate stimmulus?
  6. Doctrine of specific nerve energies (Johannes Muller)?
  7. what does the sensation perceived depend on?
  1. change detectable by the body
  2. form of energy that stimuli take
  3. structure that responds to particular modality
  4. conversion from one form of energy to another
  5. modality with lowest energy that would activate the receptor
  6. receptors would only respond to certain stimulus and not to others
  7. depends on receptor activated, NOT stimulus

what energy is associted with:

  1. photoreceptors?
  2. mechanoreceptors?
  3. chemoreceptors?
  4. thermoreceptors?
  5. nocireceptors?
  6. electroreceptors?
  7. magnetoreceptors?
  1. light
  2. mechanical energy
  3. specific chemical
  4. change in temp.
  5. pain, noxcious stimulus
  6. electrical fields
  7. magnetic fields



What are the uses of info detected by receptors? (4)

  1. used for controlling ___ ___.
  2. used as input to the __ __ __ for __ and __.
  3. gives rise to...?
  4. has the ability to ..?
  1. efferent output
  2. reticular activating system for arousal and consciousness.
  3. animal's perception of the environment
  4. be stored for future use
  1. what two things may a receptor be?
  2. what changes are associated with these?
  3. what type of potential?
  1. A modified nerve ending
    -local change in membrane permeability
    -generator potential
  2. another cell closely associated with the sensory neuron
    -stimulation caues changes in permeability of receptor cell
    -receptor potential
  1. what are the differences in receptor vs. generator potentials?
    -location of receptor
  1. receptor potential:
    -chemically gated channels
    -receptor is sep. from cell
  2. generator potential:
    -voltage-gated channels
    -receptor is modified ending of afferent neuron
  1. receptors vary according to what?
  2. what is adaptation?
  3. what two receptors are associ. with this and what is their "speed"
  1. vary accorrding nto their speed of adaptation
  2. diminished response to sustain stimulus strength
  3. Tonic receptors:
    -do not adapt at all, or adapt slowly (e.g. muscle stretch receptors)
    phasic receptors:
    -adapt rapidly
    -exhibit "on" "off" responses (e.g. touch to the skin)

Sensory adaptation:

  1. In which two systems in the brain may it take place?
  2. what may act as a filter for sensory adaptation?
  3. whichtype of molecules may be depleted?
  4. what type of activity may be inhibited?
  5. what type of properties may change?
  6. which zone may be less sensitive?
  7. adjustments at what centers may occur.
  1. PNS or CNS
  2. receptor may act as a filter
  3. transducer molecules
  4. enzyme cascade activity
  5. electrical properties
  6. spike initiation zone
  7. adjustments at higher brain centers
  1. somatosensory pathway is "labeled" according to what two things?
  2. From what 2 things are these regions split into?
    -from ___ to __ __ area (somatosensory cortex)
        a. what is the pathway?
    -from a specific ___ to  specific ___.
    - from a specific ____ to a specific ___


  1. modality and location
  2. -from receptor to brain perception area
        a. receptor, 1st order neuron (sensory/afferent neuron), 2nd order, 3rd order...etc.
    -from a specific location to a specific portion of the cortex
  3. from a specific receptor/modality to a specific location on cortex

Photoreception: eyes and vision (may be most dominant sense)

  1. what type of pigments does it use?
  2. what does it convert light energy into?
  3. what is the evolution of the eye? (4 steps)
  1. photopigments
  2. conversion of light into action potentials
  3. eyespots --> pinhole eye --> camera eye --> compound eye
  1. what is accomodation?
  2. what happens during sympathetic and parasympathetic stimulation to the:
    -cilliary muscle?
    -suspensory ligaments?
  1. ability of lens to adjust strength to focus on both near and distant objects
  2. During sympathetic:                 Parasympathetic
    -relaxed ciliary muscle             -contracted ciliary
    -flattened, weak lens                -rounded, strong lens
    -taut suspensory ligaments        -slacked suspensory lig.


  1. what do photopigments undergo when activated by light?
  2. what enzyme do they consist of and what is it combined with?
  3. what does Rhodopsin (vert. Rod photopigment) provide vision in (specific color)?
  4. what is the insect rod pigment?
  5. what are the 4 cone photopigments?
    -are they selective or non-selective to certain wl's?
    -what do they  make possible in vision?
  1. undergo chemical alterations
  2. opsin, enzyme combined with retinene (from vitA)
  3. provides vision in shades of gry
  4. porphyropsiin
  5. red, green, blue, and ultraviolet
    -respond to selective wavelenghs
    -color vision

  1. what are 6 examples of nonsight activities depenent on input from the retina?
    -Hint: control of __ size, synchronization of __ __, contribution to ___ and ___, control of __ __, and __ response.

Sound Waves, Ears and Hearing

  1. what are the 3 uses?
  1. control of pupil size
  2. synchronization of biological clocks
  3. contribution to alertness and attention
  4. control of eye movements
  5. startle response
  1. early detection of predators, competitors, physical threats, potential
  2. detection of mating calls
  3. Herding

Sound Properties:

  1. what do compression and rarefactions of molecules mean?
  2. what is pitch/tone dependent on?
    -what is the range of ultrasonic? infrasonic? what is echolocation?
  3. what is intensity (loudness) and what is it measured in?
  4. what does timber/quality depend on?


  1. refers to sound pressure; compression= when molecules are closer together, rarefaction= when they are pulled apart
  2. depends on frequency of vibration (same loudness; 20, 20,000); ultrasonic: >20,000, infrasonic: <20 cycle
  3. amplitude of sound waves (same note); measured in decibels (dB)
  4. depends on overtones (same loudness, same note)
  1. Organ of Corti: what does it produce and where is it located?
  1. A structure in the cochlea of the inner ear that produces nerve impulses in response to sound vibrations.
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