University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Lesson 7: How do drugs affect neuron communication?

This lesson is part of the unit:

Lesson Description:

In this lesson, students investigate how drugs affect cells at the molecular level by creating clay models and discussing what the models demonstrate. Students begin by creating a model of a resting neuron and what happens when a neurotransmitter sends a message to the cell. Then, they explore how drugs affect this messaging system, using an excitatory drug, nicotine, and an inhibitory drug, hexamethonium, by adding these compounds to the clay models. Finally, the students relate what they have learned to the planarian experiment in Lesson 3 as well as apply their knowledge to describe the mechanism of action of two other drugs, curare and yerba mate tea.

Materials last updated:

Sep 11, 2014

Lesson materials:

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