Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples

Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples

Week 1 Discussion: Initial Post

Foundational Neuroscience

Agonist to antagonist spectrum of action of psychopharmacologic agents

Agonist of psychopharmacologic agents binds to neurotransmitter and caused an activation of receptors; whereas, antagonist agents then binds to those receptors that are activated by agonists, thus preventing them from being in an inactivated state; thus, causing them to be in the state that is desirable (Stahl, 2013). One such example can be seen from the neurotransmitter receptors dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.


G-protein is a protein that binds energy molecules, they are the biggest and most versatile of proteins, their job is to activate intracellular action by signaling pathways and modulate activities of ion channel (Gohar, 2018). Ion channels are transmembrane proteins that regulates the movement of ions across cell membranes and then divide them into groups according to their specificity, some of which includes sodium channels, potassium channels and calcium channels (Gohar, 2018).

Ion channel receptors are mostly multimeric proteins that are found in the plasma membrane, they form pathways from one membrane to the next; they are able to open and close chemical and mechanical signals; when these ion channels are in an open site, then they move in and out of the cell, they each have a specific allowing only one ion to pass through (Suitable by Nature, n.d).

G-protein receptors are receptors that interact with neurotransmitters as well as psychotropic medication.  G-protein and ion channel are triggered by neurotransmitters; both starts with a different messenger that binds to a specific receptor that causes activation of different downstream chemical messenger; both G-protein and Ion channels signals transduction; G-protein uses protein kinase, its job is to activate or inactive ion channels or open and close the sequence to regulate ion concentration (Stahl, 2013).


Epigenetics is described as the formation of genetics that above information coded exclusively by one’s genetic code (Stefanska & MacEwan, 2015).  Epigenetics is a system that determine if there are any gene that is made into RNA and protein specific to that gene, if is silenced; it turns genes on and off by the modification of chromatin structure that is in the cell nucleus (Stahl, 2013).  There are circumstances in which epigenetics pattern of gene activation may change from stabilization  of a silenced gene making it active or an active one, silenced based on what happens to a neuron; where pharmacologic agent can be a factor; it may cause a favorable or unfavorable response; a favorable response can be the good/therapeutic epigenetic effect where one is triggered to learn something or unfavorable effect where one is triggered to e addicted to drugs or develops conditions like anxiety disorder (Stahl, 2013).

How we respond to pharmacological agents can be affected by epigenetics; drugs that are epigenetic may help in drug therapies as well as operations and management of pain (Stefanska & MacEwan, 2015).

An example is how those with a diagnosis of schizophrenia is treated; the pharmacological agent that is used to treat it, acts by reducing dopamine levels in the brain; the antagonist of dopamine works by binding the receptors causing a deactivation (Stahl, 2013). Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.


Gohar, O. (2018). Ion channel modulation by g-protein coupled receptors. Alomone Labs. Retrieved from

Stefanska, B., & MacEwan, D. J. (2015). Epigenetics and pharmacology. British Journal of Pharmacology172(11), 2701–2704.

Stahl, S. M. (2013). Stahl’s essential psychopharmacology: Neuroscientific basis and practical applications (4th ed.). New York, NY: Cambridge University Press

Suitable by Nature. (n.d.). Ion Channel | Learn science at suitable. Retrieved from Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.


Discussion: Foundational Neuroscience

As a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner, it is essential for you to have a strong background in foundational neuroscience Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples. In order to diagnose and treat clients, you must not only understand the pathophysiology of psychiatric disorders, but also how medications for these disorders impact the central nervous system. These concepts of foundational neuroscience can be challenging to understand. Therefore, this Discussion is designed to encourage you to think through these concepts, develop a rationale for your thinking, and deepen your understanding by interacting with your colleagues.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

· Analyze the agonist-to-antagonist spectrum of action of psychopharmacologic agents

· Compare the actions of g couple proteins to ion gated channels

Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples

· Analyze the role of epigenetics in pharmacologic action

· Analyze the impact of foundational neuroscience on the prescription of medications

Learning Resources

Note:  To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the  Course Materials  section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings

Post a response to each of the following: Include sub headings please.

1. Explain the agonist-to-antagonist spectrum of action of psychopharmacologic agents.

2. Compare and contrast the actions of g couple proteins and ion gated channels.

3. Explain the role of epigenetics in pharmacologic action.

4. Explain how this information may impact the way you prescribe medications to clients. Include a specific example of a situation or case with a client in which the psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner must be aware of the medication’s action.

Points to follow when writing a paper:

· Please all bullets points, bold, red and highlighted area must be attended to.

· A clear purpose statement (The purpose of this paper is to…) is required in the introduction of all writings.

· Please review all rubrics.

· Check APA format/setting.

· Your final paragraph should be a summary of the key points of your paper.

· Please personalized where necessary.

Refrain from direct quote

Class Rules

Avoid public facing sites like university web pages or foundation pages (such as the American Cancer Society or the Alzheimer’s Association) and medical sites designed for consumption by the general public (such as Mayo Clinic or WebMD). Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples

you are required to cite scholarly resources including peer-review journals and current practice guidelines.

May use

Writer must be familiar with nursing pharmacology Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples



Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples Initial Post

Agonist-antagonist action of psychopharmacologic agents

An agonist is an exogenous substrate that bind to receptors causing a biologic response (Merck, 2018). For this discussion, the exogenous substrates are drugs that affect the neuronal communications. The agonists produce a conformational change in the G-protein receptors that signal the synthesis of a second messenger (Stahl, 2013). Another way that drugs can affect neuronal communication is boosting the levels of a natural full agonist neurotransmitter (Stahl, 2013). A full agonist neuroreceptor occupies all or a fraction of receptors that results in the maximum response. A partial agonist causes lesser response while occupying all receptors. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.

In some cases, this process can cause problems. Excess amounts of dopamine is thought to contribute to agitation, and, in one case, the death of an infant (Greenberg, 1984). In these cases, using an antagonist is recommended (Stahl, 2013). There are four types of drug antagonism: chemical, physiological, pharmacokinetic, and pharmacologic. Using another drug to block excess dopamine is an example of chemical antagonism. When two drugs have different actions at the same receptor cancel each other out that is a physiological antagonism (Merck, 2018). Pharmacokinetic antagonism is when one drug due to absorption, distribution, or rate of elimination is suppressed. Pharmacologic antagonism occurs when the action of a full or partial agonist is inhibited in the pathway or at the receptor (Merck, 2018). The antagonist drugs create no action but are only inhibitory (Stahl, 2013) Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.

G-couple-proteins vs. ion-gated channels

Neural transduction relies on chemical messengers in a cascade of reactions that are compared to express routes.  (Stahl, 2013). The G-couple-proteins and ion-gated channels are two of four primary sites of transduction. The G-couple-proteins span the membrane of the neuron seven times, and each span forms around a central core where it binds to a neurotransmitter. A drug can interact at any of the transmembrane sites in the body and depending on the drug can cause several reactions. (Stahl, 2013). Ion-gated channels are transmembrane openings where the passage of neurotransmitters is gated by the electrical charges of the neurotransmitter. Ion channels can make drugs easier or harder to open (Stahl, 2013) Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples. While G-couple-proteins and ion-gated channels both rely on the first messenger to be chemical, ion-gated channels, the second messenger can be a chemical or a positively charged ion like calcium or sodium.

Epigenetics in pharmacologic action

Epigenetics is the study of how genes are expressed from both our personalities and the environment (Cholewa-Waclaw, J., Bird, A., von Schimmelmann, M., Schaefer, A., Yu, H., Song, H., … Tsai, L.-H. 2016). This is due to the complex chemical changes that allow the gene to be expressed or repressed. One possible result is that the stress response system (SRS) of the organism can affect gene expression as the body struggles to maintain homeostasis. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples Stress over a period of years negatively influences the cardiovascular and gastrointestinal systems and can lead to depression, addiction, accidents from poor concentration, and learning Cholewa-Waclaw 2016).

Epigenetics in a way is the genes in your brain tell a body’s story. Stahl (2008). Depending on the person, the story can be a tale of happiness or a tale of drug addiction, trauma, and violence. From the formation of the neural tube in utero and the external environment of maternal nutrition affects the development of a healthy brain is where the story begins. The story continues as memories are formed in the hippocampus. One possible way to attain homeostasis is medications that create feelings of trust and safety. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.

Implications for prescribing with example

The drugs prescribed for disorders of the brain and nervous system carry the potential for lifetime consequences and are not met to be taken lightly. Any assessments with these kinds of medications need to be extensive and both client and loved ones need to educated.

A 36-year-old male admitted to the local psychiatric hospital. During his first admission, he is given lamotrigine (trade name Lamictal) for bipolar symptoms. Lamotrigine is a voltage-gated channel blocker (ion-gated channel) (Stahl, 2017). His symptoms improved, and he is discharged. However, a few months later, he is readmitted and is put back on the Lamotrigine. Soon after, he develops a fever (39 C) that the medical doctor treated with acetaminophen and antibiotics without physically assessing the client. Two days later, a rash appears on the palmar surfaces of his hands, lips, and neck. The client is transferred to the community hospital and air-evacuated to a burn unit where he succumbed to Stevens-Johnson Syndrome Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.

Skin rashes are a common side effect of lamotrigine (Stahl, 2017). However, it also discusses the importance of dosing when a patient stops taking the medication for more than five days (Stahl, 2017). The patient given the same dose of medication without reporting his previous use of the drug.   It is important that lamotrigine doses should be titrated from low doses upon restarting. The importance of dosing is related to the drug concentration and the drug’s potential to exert its effects when there is higher concentration.

In the example, education of the prescriber, caregivers, and patient about the medication might have averted the patient’s death. Though it is not possible to memorize all the side effects and details of the numerous drugs available to treat all human ailments, understanding the mechanism of action forms a basis for general understanding. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.


Cholewa-Waclaw, J., Bird, A., von Schimmelmann, M., Schaefer, A., Yu, H., Song, H., … Tsai, L.-H. (2016). The role of epigenetic mechanisms in the regulation of gene expression in the nervous system. The Journal of Neuroscience, 36(45), 11427–11434.

Greenberg, J. (1984). Infant death tied to dopamine excess. Science News, 126, p. 165.

Laureate Education (Producer). (2012). Introduction to advanced pharmacology. Baltimore, MD:Laureate Education. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples

Merck & Co., Inc. (2018). Drug action and pharmacodynamics. Retrieved August 24, 2018 from

Stahl, S. M. (2013). Stahl’s essential psychopharmacology: Neuroscientific basis and practical applications (4th ed.). New York, NY: Cambridge University Press

Stahl, S. M. (2017). Essential psychopharmacology: Prescriber’s guide (6th ed). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples

Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples Response #1


For the case of Epigenetics, it does have ties to trauma. According to Kirkpatrick (2016) The trauma removed some of these DNA methylation marks, thereby bolstering the activity of the gene and increasing the amount of glucocorticoid receptors produced. Not only was this disruption observed in the hippocampus of the mice offspring, but the epigenetic changes were also found in the germ cells of the fathers of these mice, who were separated from their mothers early in life. The researchers believe that the changes in DNA methylation may be transmitted across generations through the sperm.


Kirkpatrick, B. (2017, November 28). Inherited Epigenetic and Behavioral Consequences of Trauma Could be Reversed. Retrieved from


Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples Response #2

Hello S,

“Research over the last decade has implicated epigenetic alterations, a subset of which are likely permanent, in the enduring effects of such early life stress. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples. Such epigenetic alterations presumably affect depression vulnerability both by mediating sustained alterations in the steady state expression levels of certain genes and by altering other genes’ inducibility in response to subsequent challenges later in life (Nestler, E. J., Peña, C. J., Kundakovic, M., Mitchell, A., & Akbarian, S. 2015).”


Nestler, E. J., Peña, C. J., Kundakovic, M., Mitchell, A., & Akbarian, S. (2015). Epigenetic Basis of Mental Illness. The Neuroscientist : a review journal bringing neurobiology, neurology and psychiatry, 22(5), 447-63. Foundational neuroscience discussion essay examples.




start Whatsapp chat
chat us now
We will write your work from scratch and ensure it's plagiarism-free, you just submit the completed work.