About This Chapter
Physiology II: The Nervous, Immune, and Endocrine Systems
How does the human body function? How do our senses work, our brains think and our bodies protect us from the many perils of the world? In these physiology lessons, you'll learn all about three systems within the body that are integral your day-to-day life, whether you're aware of them or not: the nervous system, the immune system and the endocrine system.
While studying the nervous system, you'll watch lessons on the structure and function of neurons. Just what are these excitable little cells that pulse throughout the body? You'll learn how nerve signals wouldn't be able to travel anywhere without synapses. Further lessons will cover the different types of responses that occur within the body, including sympathetic and parasympathetic responses.
No study of physiology would be complete without a focus on the brain. You'll study the roles of the various parts of the brain, including the cerebellum, the medulla oblongata and the hypothalamus. Of course, your brain is being used right now to read about itself. Without your brain functioning, you could never understand how your brain works. It boggles the, well, mind.
Additional lessons will help you understand the immune system. You may be aware that your body is constantly protecting itself from harm. Learn about T cells, lymph nodes, antibodies and all of the parts of the body that contribute to this fight. Ultimately, your body is seeking homeostasis, or a constant balance. Lessons in this course will show you how homeostatic mechanisms maintain this stability, including feedback response, error signal and feedback control.
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1. Homeostasis and Temperature Regulation in Humans
Do you wonder how your body is able to maintain a consistent temperature? Have you ever questioned why you get goosebumps when you're cold? This lesson will introduce you to homeostasis and answer your questions about body temperature regulation and reactions, like goosebumps.
2. Homeostasis of Glucose Levels: Hormonal Control and Diabetes
In this lesson, we'll look at how the body uses hormones to maintain homeostasis of blood glucose levels, what happens in people who have diabetes, and how diabetics can manage their disease.
3. Functions of the Nervous System
In this lesson, we'll watch Timmy as he plays in his backyard. Watch what happens when he tries to catch a butterfly, hears a mean dog bark, and scrapes his knee. All of Timmy's reactions are tied to his nervous system. For a full explanation of what goes on in the human nervous system, check out the video!
4. The Structure and Function of Neurons
In this video lesson, you'll learn about neurons, which are specialized cells in the nervous system. Check out how far neurons can send signals throughout the body and how depolarization is much like 'the wave' at a football game.
5. The Central and Peripheral Nervous Systems
Did you know that hammerhead sharks and platypuses share a special type of sensory neuron that humans and most other animals don't have? In this lesson, you'll find out what that sensory neuron and a whole lot of others can do. You'll also learn how the nervous system is organized and the differences between the central and peripheral nervous systems.
6. The Sympathetic and Parasympathetic Nervous Systems
In this lesson, you'll learn about two subdivisions of the autonomic nervous system - the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. Watch as a hiker, Phil, runs away from a terrifying bear and see how these systems react to the impending danger!
7. Brain Structures and Functions Part I
The brain's complexity can often be difficult to understand because it serves so many important functions. In this lesson, you'll get a little help from Nrr, the alien biologist, who will guide you through understanding the structure and functions of the human brain.
8. The Cerebral Cortex: Brain Structures and Functions Part II
Check out this video lesson to learn about the four lobes of the human brain - the frontal, parietal, occipital and temporal. You'll learn about the functions and processes of each region.
9. Innate Immunity: Inflammation, Neutrophils & Natural Killer Cells
You might already know how your body handles known infectious agents but how about unknown? Watch this video to explore your innate immune system - your body's defense against new bacteria and viruses.
10. Acquired Immunity: T Cells, B Cells and Antibodies
Have you ever wondered why some people don't ever seem to get sick? These people likely have an acquired immunity. Learn more about the immune system and how exposure to an illness one time can help your body to prevent that illness from ever occurring again.
11. Antibiotics and Vaccines
Do you know why children must get regularly vaccinated? Have you ever wondered how an antibiotic works and why they are so widely prescribed? If so, this lesson will help you to understand how changes in medicine have almost eliminated several deadly diseases and added decades to the average person's lifespan.
12. Flu Viruses, HIV and Immune System Evasion
Why is it that our immune systems can protect us from some viruses but not others? We've eradicated smallpox by using vaccines, so why do influenza and HIV remain such dangerous health risks? In this lesson about viruses, we'll explore these questions and learn how influenza and HIV continue to evade the human immune system.
13. Pathogens: Antibiotic Resistance and Virulence
Find out more about how the overuse of antibiotics could lead to some serious problems with epidemics or untreatable diseases in the future. You can also discover some of the things that make pathogens harmful and why pathogens don't cause disease in every species they infect.
14. Structures & Functions of the Endocrine System
This lesson will cover the basics of the endocrine system. We will discuss different types of hormones and examine how the glands and hormones work together to make up this system.
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