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Functional Neuroanatomy Essay

538 words - 3 pages

The article, “Neural Mechanism of Rapid Eye Movement Sleep Generation with Reference to REM-OFF Neurons In Locus Coeruleus” (Pal & Mallick, 2007), was researched in the study section of this unit and is discussed, as it relates to neuroanatomical structures. The reading stated that GABA is an amino acid, and denoted as the most important inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain (Carlson, 2013). Additionally, GABAergic can work on several areas of the neuroanatomical structure, for example, in the pontine reticular formation, where GABAergic REM-on Cells works with other neurons in ventrolateral preoptic area (VLPO) to inhibit monaminergic transmission (Carlson, 2013). Sundström Poromaa et al., (2003) support this view when they describe the GABA neurotransmitter as; “the GAGAergic system is a ubiquitous and primary mediator of inhibition the nervous system” ...view middle of the document...

, 2003). In addition, the reading also submitted that metabotropic receptors in contrast to the ionotropic action, are indirectly affected by neurotransmitter to produce ion channel changes, which was also much slower than ionotropic receptors (Carlson, 2013) or GABAB that was described in the article (Sundström Poromaa et al., 2003).

Furthermore, the course text and the literature review described the functioning of the neuroanatomical structure of REM-on cells and REM-off cells that are located in the pontine reticular formation and relates to REM sleep (Carlson, 2010; Pal & Mallick, 2007). Moreover, the functioning of the neuroanatomical structure is a cessation of REM-OFF neurons firing, which is required to generate REM sleep (Pal & Mallick, 2007). In addition, the non-cessation of those neurons results in REM sleep loss, which can lead to irritation, loss of memory retention, hyper-sexuality etc., (Blumenfeld, 2010). Likewise, if damage were to occur in this area, it would be expected to see signs similar to Parkinsonism disease, as degeneration of this neuroanatomical structure would abolish the normal inhibition of motor activity during REM sleep or REM sleep behavior disorder (Blumenfeld, 2010).


Leroy J. Woods

Blumenfeld, H. (2010). Neuroanatomy through clinical cases (2nd ed.). Sunderland, MA: Sinauer Associates. ISBN: 9780878930586.

Carlson, N. R. (2013). Physiology of behavior (11th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.. ISBN: 9780205889785.

Pal, D., & Mallick, B. N. (2007). Neural mechanism of rapid eye movement sleep generation with reference to REM-OFF neurons in locus coeruleus. Indian Journal of Medical Research, 125(6), 721-39. Retrieved from

Sundström Poromaa, I., Smith, S., & Gulinello, M. (2003). GABA receptors, progesterone and premenstrual dysphoric disorder. Archives of Women's Mental Health, 6(1), 23-41. doi:

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