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Fight or Flight Physiological Response

Jay has been afraid of dogs since he was bitten as a child. When he sees a dog, it sets off an intense reaction that involves both the nervous and endocrine systems. This is called the â??fight or flightâ? reaction because it prepares the person to fight off the danger or to run away.

Jay sees a dog and the visual signal is transmitted by neurons using (a)____ ___ signals inside the neurons and using chemicals called (b)__neurotransmitters__ between neurons. The signal arrives at and is processed in the (c)_occipital_ lobe of the brainâ??s cerebral cortex. A signal is also sent to a bean-sized central brain structure known as the (d)___pituitary gland___ which responds to strong emotions. Another brain structure, the hypothalamus, sends a signal to an endocrine gland called the (e)__________ that releases a hormone that in turn stimulates other endocrine glands. At the same time, the hypothalamus activates a branch of the peripheral nervous system known as the (f)___________ that increases heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing rate. Jay reacts by running away. To accomplish this, a signal is sent from the (g)________ lobe of the cerebral cortex through the (h)_______ branch of the peripheral nervous system to Jayâ??s leg muscles. Once Jay is safely away from the dog, his brain signals all systems to return to normal through the (i)_______ branch of the peripheral nervous system. Jay thinks about how lucky he was and plans what he will do next using the (j) _______ lobe of his cerebral cortex.


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Solution Preview

d should be amygdala, not the pituitary gland

a. action potential (your terminology may be different, but it is electric signals, ...

Solution Summary

What kinds of changes occur in the brain that signal to the endocrine system during the fight or flight response? This question is answered in depth in the solution.