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MCAT Question A Day - 6/28/13 - Answer!

What is the primary difference between the various types of sensory receptors?

A.  They are sensitive to different kinds of stimuli.
B.  They pass signals along to different types of neurons.
C.  Some pass their information into the CNS, while others pass their information out of the CNS.
D.  They each utilize different neurotransmitters.

The correct answer is (A). Different kinds of receptors respond to different forms of energy such as light (visual receptors), chemicals (chemoreceptors), mechanical (mechanoreceptors), and heat (thermoreceptors). They all directly or indirectly affect sensory neurons (choice B). All relay information into the CNS (choice C). Some receptors communicate with sensory neurons via electrical signals, while others release neurotransmitters onto the sensory neuron. However, each does not utilize a different neurotransmitter (choice D).