*2. Neurotransmitters, receptors, neurochemistry, neurogenetics, and psychopharmacology.* The types of neurotransmitters, their regulation of manufacture, release, and catabolism, their roles and effects at the different receptors, their regulation, and how genetic variations and pharmacological manipulations affect cognition and behavior. Particular emphasis placed on the monoamines (e.g. dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine), since those are the ones people most often think that they understand.
This talk was given on 8/25/2011 at Crash Space, crashspacela.com. This is part 1 of a 2-part series. This segment provides a foundation of how neurotransmitter systems work in general, covering topics like synthesis, vesicular storage and release, post-synaptic receptors, reuptake transport proteins, and catabolic (degradation) enzymes. Also covered are the specific neurotransmitters glutamate, GABA, and acetylcholine, plus an interrupted discussion of the catecholamines dopamine, norepinephrine, and epinephrine.
Non-sciencey people will find some parts (especially near the beginning) difficult to follow, but there will still be plenty that everyone should be able to get.