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Body Coordination

Body coordination is a life process that involves harmonious fuctioning of interrelated organs
and parts in the body to produce a coordinated response
Two body systems that control and regulate coordination are:
The nervous system
The endocrine system
A stimulus is a detectable change in the internal or external environment.It evokes a
Response is an action or movement as a result of a stimulus.
The nervous system handles fast and short responses which involve the transmission of
electrical impulses

The Human Nervous System

The human nervous system can be divided into:

The central nervous system (CNS) which consists of the brain and spinal cord.
The peripheral nervous system (PNS) which consists of cranial nerves and spinal

nervous system

A neurone is a nerve cell which is the basic functional unit of the nervous system
The central nernous system consists of the brain and spinal cord
The peripheral nervous system consists of cranial nerves and spinal nerves.
The brain is an organ that is the centre of control and coordination in the nervous system
The spinal cord controls reflex action
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The peripheral nervous system is the network of nerves which connect the central nervous
system with other parts of the body.
Cranial nerves composed of 12 pairs of nerves which orogonate from the brain and are
connected to sense organs in the head and neck, and also to effectors such as the muscles
or glands in the body cavity.
Spinal nerves are composed of 31 pairs of nerves which originate from spinal cord and are
connected to sense organs and effectors in the whole body including hands and legs.


A neurone is a nerve cell.It is the basic functional unit of the nervous system
The cell body contains many projections
Dendrons - projections from the cytoplasm that point outward from the cell body
Dendrites - smaller projections that branch from dendrons or axons
Axons - another type of projection
Dendrans and dendrites receive messages from other cells and trnasmit the message to the
cell body
Axons conduct messages away from the cell body
Some axons in certain neurones are covered by myelin sheath.The sheath breaks up at
intervals along the dendrons or axons.This enables impulses to jump from one node to
another, shortening the time impulses travel along the surface of the axons or dendrons.
Besides this, the meylin sheath is important because:
It acts as an electrical insulator
it is a source of food for axons and dendrons
it also protects axons and dendrons from physical injury.

Types of neurones

There are three types of neurones

sensory neurones
motor neurones
interneurones (relay neurones)

Nervous Coordination
Receptors and effectors

Any changes which occur inside and outside of the human body are known as stimuli
Receptors are sensory cells that detect and receive stimuli and turn them into electrical
Effectors are muscles or glands which produce responses due to stimuli.They respond to
stimuli by:
gland secretion
Figure above shows how the human nervous system works.
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Nerve Impulses

are messages conveyed along the nerve in the form of weak electrical pulse
An impulse moves only in one direction as shown in figure.

Impulses move in one direction

Reflex action

A reflex action is a rapid,automatic unlearned response to a stimulus.This action is

involuntary and cannot be controlled by the brain
A reflex action does not require conscious thought or decision by the brain
The components involved in a reflex action are:
The receptors
The effectors
Sensory neurones
Relay neurones
Motor neurones

Reflex arc

A reflex arc is a sequence of pathways taken by the impulses from receptors to effectors in
a reflex action
The pathway of impulses in a reflex arc are as follow:
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Pathway of impulses


Proprioceptors are sense organs which are connected to sensory neurones.Humans are able
to determine the position of their legs, arms, head and other parts, along with the
orientation of the body as a whole with this type of receptors
Proprioceptors are found in all skeletal muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints.They provide
information to the brain regarding adjustment in posture and movement.Therefore,
adjusments may be made to maintain body posture or to carry out a particular body


Kinaesthesis is the ability to sense the position, location, orientation and movement of the
body and its part without looking at ourselves.

The Human Brain and Its Complexity

Structure of the brain

The human brain is the most complex organs in the human body.It is also the most complex
brain among all mammals.
The brain is the centre that contols and coordinates our responses as shown in above
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The human brain has an external layer which is white in colour.

The grey-coloured layer is made up of closely packed neurone cell bodies which form
the grey matter of the brain
The white-coloured layer is made up of nerve fibres which form the white matter of
the brain
The human brain can be divided into three main parts:
Medulla oblongata

Human Brain


The cerebrum is the largest part of the human brain.It makes up about 80% of the mass of
the human brain.
The cerebrum can be divided into two hemispheres.
Right hemisphere
Left hemisphere
Nerve impulses from the left side of the body will be received by the right hemisphere
whereas nerve impulses from the right side of the body will be received by the left
Functions of the cerebrum are:
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It controls voluntary and highest intellectual functions such as thinking, learning and
problem solving.
It regulates emotion and memory through the limbic system.
It controls human behavior.
Receives and interpets impulses from sensory organs


The cerebellum is located below and behind the cerebrum

The function of the cerebellum are:
Controlling and maintaining posture and balance of the body
Controlling and coordinating muscular activities

Medulla oblongata

Medulla oblongata is the lower most portion of the brain and is continuos with the spinal
cord.It is the smallest component of the brain
Medulla oblongata relays nerve signals between the brain and spinal cord.
Medulla oblongata controlsn automatic functions

Voluntary and involuntary actions

Human respond to a stimulus through voluntary actions and involuntary actions

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Effect of injuries to specific parts of the human brain

Hormonal Coordination in the Body


are chemicals secreted by endocrine glands.Hormone produced are secreted directly into the
bloodstream and carried by blood to tissues or organs without the need of any ducts.They
are usually secreted is small amounts
The hormones have a specific effect only on the tissue or an organ designed to receive its
message .This tissue or organ is called target tissueor target organ.This is because only this
specifictissue or organ will respond to them.
Important roles of hormones are:
causing physical and physiological changes.
Controlling the rate of body process
Influencing growth

The endocrine system

Chemical coordination involves the endocrine glands and their secretion

Endocrine system consists of endocrine glands and their secretion
Endocrine glands do not have ducts.Thus it is also called ductless glands.
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Pituitary gland

is located at the base of the brain just beneath the hypothalamus

The anterior lobe regulates the activity of several glands.Among these are thyroid,adrenals
and reproductive glands.
It produces hormones such as:
Corticotropin - stimulates the adrenal gland to produce certain hormones.
Growth hormone - stimulates the growth of bones, muscles and other body
organs.Plays a role in the handling of nutriens and minerals in the human body.
Prolactin - promotes the development of glandular tissue in the female breast during
pregnancy.Stimulates milk production in women who are breastfeeding.
Thyrotropin - stimulates the thyroid gland to produce thyroxine hormones.
The posterior lobe of the pituitary gland releases antidiuretic hormones (ADH).This hormone
acts on the kidneys to regulate water content and write output.Oxytocin is also released by
the posterior lobe.Oxytocin triggers the contraction of the uterus during labour.It also
stimulates the ejection of milk from the lactating breast.

Thyroid gland

The thyroid gland is located in the front of the lower neck.

Hormone thyroxine produced by the thyroid gland has the following functions:
Controls metabolic rate
Controls skeletal growth
Controls mental development
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Pancreas produces two important hormones

Insulin - insulin decreases blood glucose concentration by stimulating the conversion of

glucose into glycogen in the liver.
Glucagon - glucagon increases blood glucose concentration by stimulating the conversion of
glycogen to glucose in the liver.

Insulin and glucagon work together to maintain a steady level of glucose in the blood.This is
important to produce and maintain stores of energy.

Adrenal gland

is located on top of each kidney.

The adrenal glands have two parts; the internal part is the adrenal cortex and the inner part
is name adrenal medulla
Adrenal cortex produces hormones called corticosteroids.Corticosteroids influence or
regulate salt and water balance in the body, the body's response to stress,metanolism,the
immune system and sexual development abd function.
Adrenal medulla produces catecholamines such as adrenaline.


are located in the female reproductive system

Ovaries produce two groups of female sex hormones.
Oestrogen is involved in the development of secondary sexual characteristics in female such
The development of breasts
The accumulation of body fat aroundthe hips and thighs.
Maturation of reproductive organs such as the uterus and vagina.
Progesterone prepare the uterus lining for pregnancy


is located in the male reproductives system

testis secretes hormones called androgens
The most important androgen hormone is testosterone.

Coordination between the Nervous System and the Endocrine System

The two types of coordination work together at certain times.The human digestive system is
a good example.When food is served,the mouth will start to salivate and this response is
coordinated by the nervous system.Gastrin a type of hormone is secreted when the half-
digested food goes into the stomach.Gastrin causes the stomach wall to produce
hydrochloric acid and other emzymes to carry out further digestion.
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Effects of Drug Abuse on Body Coordination and Health

Definition of drugs

Drugs are chemical or biological substances which affect the function of the nerveous
system,especially the brain,causing changes in behaviour and personality.They change the
way the body works.

Types of drugs

The four main types of drugs are:

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Drug abuse

is the misuse or overuse of any medication or drug

Reasons of drug abuse include:
use drugs because they are thrill-seekers
use drugs out of curiosity or because their friends do it
use drugs in order to cope with unpleasant emotions and difficulties in life

Effects of Excessive Consumption of Alcohol on Body Coordination and

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Ethanol commonly known as alcohol is found in most alcoholic drinks.It is a strong

psychoactive substance with a depressing effect.
Ethanol is produced in a process call fermentation.Fermantation is a process that uses yeast
or bacteria to change the glucose in the food into ethanol.

Yeast + glucose > ethanol + carbon dioxide + energy

Effect of excessive consumption of alcohol on body coordination

Alcohol is a depressant.This means it slows down the function of the central nervous
When alcohol is consumed, it is absorbed into the bloodstream rapidly and travels around
the body to the brain.

Effect of excessive consumption

Alcohol is broken down into acetaldehyde by the enzyme, alcohol dehydrogenase in

the liver.The acetaldehyde is then broken down into acetic acid by the enzyme
acetaldehyde dehydrogenase.Next acetic acid is converted into fats or carbon dioxide
and water.Fatty acids build up as plaques in the capillaries around liver cells.Liver cells
begin to die.This leads to the liver disease called cirrhosis.As we know the liver is
damaged,certain toxins build up.This leads to sympthoms of jaundice.
Foetal alcohol syndrome is another one consequence of excessive consumption of
alcohol use.
Foetal alcohol syndrome:
a foetus is fed through the placenta inside the mother.Since alcohol passes
easily through the placenta,the developing foetus gets a dose of alcohol when
the mother drinks alcohol.