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BIOD27H3 Lecture Notes - Membrane Potential, Axon Terminal, Organism

Biological Sciences
Course Code
Catherine Nash

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1Physiology Midterm Review
Lecture 1: Introduction to Physiology
What is Physiology?
oDerived from the Greek phusis - PHYSIS and logia - DISCOURSE
oThe science which treats of the functions of ANIMALS
oStudy of the science of LIFE
ohow (i.e the MECHANISM underlying the function): oxygen binds to haemoglobin
molecules in red blood cells
owhy (i.e the REASON): because cells need oxygen and red blood cells bring it to
Claude Bernard:
oAlso includes: neurotransmitters, hormones and chemicals
Some of Claude Bernards Discoveries:
oThe role of the pancreatic secretion in the digestion of FAT (1848).
oA new function of the liver--the "internal secretion" of GLUCOSE into the blood
oElevation of local skin temperature upon section of the cervical sympathetic nerve
(1851). Which demonstrated that SKIN TEMP WAS CONTROLLED BY
oThe demonstration that the CURARE specifically blocks neuromuscular junction
oThe demonstration that carbon monoxide blocks the respiration of red blood cells
(1857). Blocks binding of OXYGEN TO HAEMOGLOBIN
So how do we understand mammalian physiology?
oDays of Bernard = 1800s to 1900s didnt have the appropriate technology, so they
studied the organism, sometimes by dissecting

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oGenome project was started in 1999 and completed in 2003 and they discovered that
each encodes several proteins
1)Apply an integrated approach
2)Requirement for hypothesis
3)Experimental design, e.g choice of the correct system (i.e MODEL)
oVariability between subjects (human studies): age, health, lifestyle, weight
oPsychological bias: caused by experimenter or subject (if human); placebo, cross over,
double blinded
oEthical considerations: animal numbers, clinical trials with new drugs
How physiologists use technology to understand how the body works:
- Formulation of a hypothesis
- Experimental design
- Factors to be taken into consideration
- How technology changes our understanding of science
oThalidomide in pregnant women cause mutation in the babies cause dolphin fin,
but in certain cancer patients can be used to treat cancer
Chapter 1 Review:
oPhysiology is the study of normal functioning of a living organism and its component
parts, including all its chemical and physical processes
oPhysiology means knowledge of nature
oAnatomy is the study of structure, with little emphasis on function
oLevels of organization of living organisms range from atoms to groups of the same
species to population of different species living together
CHEMISTRY---------MOLEC. BIO----CELL. BIO-----PHYSIOLOGY----------------------------------------------------
Atoms>molecules>>>>cells>>>>>tissues>>>>>>organs>organ systems>organisms>pop. of 1
species>ecosystem of diff. System>biosphere
oHomeostasis: Derived from: homeo: similar -stasis: condition

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Few cells are able to exchange materials with the external environment. Most cells are in
contact with the internal environment made of extracellular fluid (ECF).
oThe cell is the smallest unit of structure capable of carrying out all life processes >
collections of molecules separated from the outside environment by a barrier called
the cell (plasma) membrane
oTissues that form structural and functional units are known as organs and the
organs work together to make organ systems
oIntegumentary system (covering) is made of the skin it forms a protective boundary
that separates the bodys inside from the outside world.
oImmune cells are positioned to stop materials from entering through the skin and
protecting the internal environment from foreign invaders.
oMusculoskeletal system provides support and body movement; respiratory system
exchanges gases: digestive system takes up nutrients and water and eliminates
wastes; urinary system removes excess water and waste material; reproductive
system makes egg or sperm; circulatory system distributes materials by pumping
blood through vessels. Nervous and endocrine systems coordinate body functions.
oWhy thinking is called teleological approach; function of the physiological system is
the why of the system
oHow thinking is called the mechanistic approach; physiological processes or
mechanisms are the how
oMost cells in the body arent tolerant of changes in their surroundings
oHomeostasis is the ability to cope with external variability by keeping the internal
environment stable
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