Animated scheme of the Autonomic control of body functions. Turn information on or off for step-by-step study or self - testing. The autonomic nervous system (ANS or visceral nervous system or involuntary nervous system) is the part of the peripheral nervous system that acts as a control system functioning largely below the level of consciousness, and controls visceral functions. The ANS affects heart rate, digestion, respiratory rate, salivation, perspiration, diameter of the pupils, micturition (urination), and sexual arousal. Whereas most of its actions are involuntary, some, such as breathing, work in tandem with the conscious mind.
Biological psychiatry occupies itself by mental disorders from biological, chemical and physical point of view. It is postulated that changes in brain signal transmission are essential in development of mental disorders. The purpose of this teaching material is to describe cellular and molecular properties of neurons, mechanisms of psychotropic drugs action and biological basis of mental disorders. Familiarity with biochemistry and physiology is supposed.