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1.

The effect of different types of meals before exercise was tested on metabolism and
performance for twelve competitive cyclists. The cyclists ingested either high fat or high
carbohydrate meals before the start of exercise.
The test consisted of:
1 hour of cycling at half peak power (pre-load)
followed by five 10 minute incremental increases in intensity (load)
and a 50 km time trial.

The concentration of various hormones in the blood plasma of the cyclists was measured. The
graphs below indicate the change in insulin and glucagon levels before and during the cycling
test.
P re lo a d

In c re m e n ta l
te s t (lo a d )

50 km
tim e tria l

80
60
40
30
In s u lin c o n c e n tra tio n /
m U d m 3
(lo g s c a le )

20
15
10
5
K ey:

H ig h fa t
H ig h c a rb o h y d ra te

240
200
160

G lu c a g o n c o n c e n tra tio n /
n g d m 3
(lo g s c a le )

120
100
80
60
50
40
30
20
100

60

20

20
60
100
T e s t d u ra tio n / m in

140

160

[Source: Rowlands and Hopkins, International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism,
(2002), 12, page 318]

(a)

Describe the changes in insulin concentration during the course of the exercise period for
those cyclists who ate a high carbohydrate meal.
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(2)

(b)

Compare the changes in insulin and glucagon concentration during the pre-load and
incremental test period.
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(2)

(c)

Using the data provided, outline how the changes illustrate negative feedback of insulin
and glucagon.
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(2)
(Total 6 marks)

2.

Near the middle of pregnancy in humans, the placenta begins to secrete a hormone called
corticotrophin-releasing hormone (CRH). CRH influences the production of hormones which
stimulate the development of the fetus.
A study was carried out to determine if levels of CRH were correlated with the timing of the
babys delivery. Blood samples were taken from 500 women during their pregnancies and the
concentration of CRH was measured. The women were then divided into three groups according
to whether their baby was delivered prematurely, at full-term (about 40 weeks) or late.

The graph below shows how the concentration of CRH varied in the mothers blood (maternal
blood) in each of the three groups during pregnancy.
100

K ey:
w o m e n w h o d e liv e re d
p re m a tu re ly
w o m e n w h o d e liv e re d
a t fu ll-te rm
w o m e n w h o d e liv e re d
la te

M a te rn a l C R H
c o n c e n tra tio n /
50
p m o l d m 3
p la s m a

15

20

25

30

T im e s in c e s ta rt o f p re g n a n c y / w e e k s
[Source: R Smith, Scientific American, (March 1999) Pages 6875]

(a)

Outline how the concentration of CRH in the blood changes during the pregnancies of
women who delivered prematurely.
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(2)

(b)

Compare how the concentration of CRH changes during the pregnancies of women who
delivered late with those that delivered at full-term.
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(2)

(c)

Measure the difference in CRH concentration at 30 weeks between the women who
delivered prematurely and those that delivered at full-term.
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(1)

(d)

Suggest how knowledge of the CRH concentration in maternal blood might be used by
doctors monitoring pregnancies.
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(2)

The Western spadefoot toad (Scaphiopus hammondii) lives in desert areas in California and lays
its eggs in pools formed by rain. When the egg first hatches, its body form is referred to as the
tadpole stage. At some point, it undergoes metamorphosis (a change in body form) to develop
into the adult toad.
If the pools where the eggs have been laid shrink due to a lack of rain, the tadpoles quickly
develop into small adult toads. If there is sufficient rain and the pools persist, the tadpoles
develop more slowly and grow large before developing into adult toads.

(e)

Suggest how undergoing metamorphosis at different times in response to water levels


helps the survival of the toad.
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(3)

It has been suggested that CRH control of development might have evolved in amphibians long
before mammals appeared. In toads, increase in CRH concentration leads directly to an increase
in the level of the hormone thyroxine and indirectly to an increase in corticosterone levels.
An experiment was carried out to determine what hormones might be involved in triggering
development in response to pond drying. Tadpoles were raised in a constant high water level
environment. They were then divided into two groups. One group was transferred to a tank
3
containing 10 dm of water a high water environment. The other group was transferred to a
3
tank of the same size containing only 1 dm of water a low water environment. The
concentrations of thyroxine and corticosterone were measured in each group. The results are
shown below.
T h y r o x in e

C o r tic o s te r o n e

60

T h y ro x in e
c o n c e n tra tio n / 4 0
n g g 1 b o d y
m ass
20

C o rtic o s te ro n e 3
c o n c e n tra tio n /
2
n g g 1 b o d y
m ass
1
0

0
L o w w a te r
H ig h w a te r
e n v iro n m e n t e n v iro n m e n t

L o w w a te r
H ig h w a te r
e n v iro n m e n t e n v iro n m e n t

[Source: R J Denver, General and Comparative Endocrinology, (1998), 110, pages 326336]

(f)

Compare the concentrations of thyroxine and corticosterone in the two groups.


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(2)

(g)

Predict how the concentration of CRH would be different in the two groups.
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(1)
(Total 13 marks)