By Lauralee Sherwood
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Extra info for Animal Physiology: From Genes to Organisms
These organs collectively break down food into small nutrient molecules that can be absorbed into the blood. We end this chapter with a closer look at these systems. The total animal body—a single, independently living individual—consists of the various organ systems structurally and functionally linked together as an entity that is separate from the external (outside organisms) environment. Thus, an animal is made up of living cells organized into life-sustaining systems. 3 Describe the basic functions of life.
We examine this development in Chapters 9 and 11. However, if there is something that each cell or organism needs to retain, such as heat, the larger object is at a 10-fold advantage because heat is typically produced by the volume of the cell and lost through its surface area. In Chapter 15 we examine this aspect of physiology in detail. Scaling also affects skeletal mechanics. The ability of a skeleton (or a tree trunk, for that matter) to support mass against gravity increases with the cross-sectional area of the skeletal element (such as a leg bone or insect limb exoskeleton).
For example, modern electronic thermostats have anticipator circuits that shut off the furnace just before the set point is actually reached, so that the hot air already on its way from the furnace to the thermostat brings the room to the set point without overshooting. As an organismal example, temperature sensors in a mammal’s skin detect external heat or cold, and can trigger corrective responses before the internal “core” temperature is disturbed. Similarly, when a meal is still in the digestive tract, a feedforward mechanism increases secretion of a hormone (insulin) that promotes cellular uptake and storage of ingested nutrients after they have been absorbed from the digestive tract.
Animal Physiology: From Genes to Organisms by Lauralee Sherwood
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