Opp ] PRM ] Brain and Behaviour ] Behav. neuroscience ] Psychopharmac. ] Genetics ] [ Wordlist ]

Small wordlist
See sources, especially Sacks, Carter, and Rosenzweig et al.

Agnosia -- (literally 'without knowledge') -- a fundamental lack of recognition

Apperceptive agnosia -- "results from damage fairly early on in the assembly line, before the perception is properly constructed. If the raw material is not put together correctly, the resulting perception will be so weak or wonky that the brain will not be able to match it with anything it already knows. [...] People with apperceptive agnosia are often affected in one modality only." (Carter, 1998, p. 188.)

Associative agnosia -- "is caused by a fault in the later stages of recognition. Here the perception may be perfect but the memories that are associated with it (and that are essential if it is to have meaning) have either been lost or cannot be retrieved." (Carter, 1998, pp. 188-189.)

Prosopagnosia -- not being able  to recognize faces.

Tonal agnosia (or atonia)-- not being able to catch the "tone" of spoken words, "the expressive qualities of voices disappear" (Sacks, 1985, p. 81); comes with disorders of the right temporal lobe.

(Receptor) agonist -- a molecule that binds to a receptor and initiates a response like that of another molecule, usually a neurotransmitter. See also: antagonist.

Agraphia -- unable to write.

Alexia -- unable to read.

(Receptor) antagonist -- a molecule, usually a drug, that binds to a receptor and interferes with or prevents the action of a neurotransmitter. See also: agonist.

Aphasia -- not being able to understand spoken words; comes with disorders of the left temporal lobe or left posterior/medial parietal cortex.

Apraxia -- "[...] the inability to carry out certain acts even though paralysis or weakness is not evident and comprehension and motivation is intact." (Rosenzweig et al, 1999, p. 308).Mainy forms: limb kinetic, ideomotor, ideational, disconnection, buccofacial, constructional, dressing, gait and apraxic agraphia.

Cerebral ischemia -- disruption of blood flow to all or part of the brain (e.g., heart attack or stroke).

Drug -- a substance that have pronounced effects when ingested in small quantities.

Edema -- swelling of the cells.

Enzyme -- "'Enzyme' is the general name given to any protein that catalyses a chemical reaction, i.e. makes a reaction more efficient, or indeed make an 'impossible' reaction possible under normal life conditions." (Easteal, McLeod, & Reed, 1991, p. 19).

Epilepsy -- a neurological disorder characterised by recurrent neuronal hyperactivity and seizures.

Etiology -- 

Exitotoxicity -- neuronal cell death caused by over excitation.

Hypoxia -- reduction in oxygen availability (e.g., asphyxia or CO poisoning).

Ionotropic receptors -- "[i.r.] directly control an ion channel. When they bind to the released transmitter, the ion channel opens and ions flow across the membrane." (Rosenzweig et al., 1999, p. 71.) See also metabotropic receptors.

Limbic system -- Amygdala, putamen, thalamus, caudate nucleus, hippocampus.

Metabotropic receptors -- "[...] recognize the synaptic transmitter, but they do not directly control the ion channels. Instead, they activate molecules known as G proteins." (Rosenzweig et al., 1999, p. 71.) See also ionotropic receptors.

Ontogeny -- the process by which an individual  changes in  the course of its lifetime.

Peptide -- small string of amino acid.

Synaesthesia -- blending of sensory perceptions; seeing tastes, smelling sights, and so on.