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excitatory signal
the signal that pushes a neuron to fire
inhibitory signal
the signal that keeps a neuron from firing
threshold
the level of stimulation required to trigger a neural impulse
all-or-none response
how a neuron responds to input
agonist
a chemical that mimics a neurotransmitter's effects and can block reuptake
antagonist
a chemical that blocks a neurotransmitter's effects
reuptake
the process by which neurotransmitters are taken back into the vesicles from the synapse
nervous system
the body's speedy, electrochemical communication network, consisting of all the nerve cells of the peripheral and central nervous systems
central nervous system
the brain and the spinal cord
peripheral nervous system
all parts of the nervous sytem lying outside the brain and spinal cord
nerves
bundles of axons that connect organs to the nervous system
sensory neurons
neurons that carry incoming information from the sensory receptors to the brain and spinal cord
motor neurons
neurons that carry outgoing information from the brain and spinal cord to the muscles and glands
interneurons
neurons within the brain and spinal cord that communicate internally and intervene between the sensory inputs and motor outputs
somatic nervous system
the system that allows voluntary movement