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Neuroscience 5th Edition PDF

Neuroscience 5th Edition PDF

Neuroscience 5th Edition PDF
Preface
Whether judged in molecular, cellular, systemic, behavioral, or cognitive terms, the human nervous system is a stupendous piece of biological machinery. Given its accomplishments-all the artifacts of human culture, for instance-there is good reason for wanting to understand how the brain and the rest of the nervous system work. The debilitating and costly effects of neurological and psychiatric disease add a further sense of urgency to this quest. The aim of this book is to highlight the intellectual challenges and excitement-as well as the uncertainties-of what many see as the last great frontier of biological science. The information presented here is intended to serve as a starting point for undergraduates, medical students, graduate students in the neurosciences, and any others who want insight into how the human nervous system operates. Like any other great challenge, neuroscience should be, and is, full of debate, dissension, and considerable fun. All these ingredients have gone into the construction of this book’s Fifth Edition; we hope they will be conveyed in equal measure to readers at all levels.
A BROAD RANGE of questions about how the nerwus systems of humans and other animals are organized. how they devaop, and how they function to generate behavior. These questions can be explored using the tools of genetics and genomics, molecular and cell biology, anatomy and systems physiology, behavioral observation, and psychology. The major ch.allenge facing students of neurosdence is to integrate the diver!le :knowledge derived from these various levels of analysis into a coherent understanding of brain structure and function. Many of the issues that have been explored successfully concern how the principal cells of all animal nervous system&–neUrOns and ~perform their functions in anatomical, electrophysiological, cellular, and molecular terms. Diverse subsets of neurons constitute ensembles called neural c:in:uits, which are the primary components of neural systems that process specific types of information. Neural systems in tum serve one of three general functions. Sensory systems represent informatio n about the state of the organism and its environment; motor systems organize and generate actions; and associational systems link the sensmy and motor compone:nls of the nexvous system, providing the basis for “higher order” brain functions such as perception, attention, cognition, emotions, language, and rational thinking. These remarkable abilities lie at the core of understanding human beings, their behavior, their history, and perhaps their future.