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HOMEOSTASIS

The maintenance of a steady state in


the body despite changes in the
external environment
The steady state is the optimum level
for the body functions

© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS


A system in homeostasis
needs
 Sensors to detect changes in the internal
environment

 A comparator to fix the set point of the system

 Effectors which bring the system back to the


set point

 Feedback control. Negative feedback stops


the system over compensating (going too far)

 A communication system to link the different


parts together. © 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS
A system in homeostasis
needs

Return to
Perturbation in
normal
the internal Sensor Comparator Effector
internal
environment
environment
Sensor

Negative
feedback

© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS


Communication systems

Stimulus
These should
consist of the Sensor
following
components Linkage
system

Effector

Response

© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS


In animals there are two
communication systems
 The endocrine system based upon
hormones
 The nervous system based upon
nerve impulses.

© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS


Hormones

 Organic substances
 Produced in small quantities

 Produced in one part of an organism (an


endocrine gland)
 Transported by the blood system

 All over the body

 Target organs or tissues respond to the


hormone.
© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS
The endocrine system
 Chemical signals
 Specific messages
 Effects may be very slow (e.g. growth
hormone over years)
 Some are very fast (e.g. adrenaline which
acts in seconds).

© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS


Nerve impulses

 All nerve impulses look the same


 Signals travel along nerves…

 …to specific parts of the body

 The nerve impulses travel very quickly


Affect their target tissues in milliseconds.

© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS


The nervous system
 The nervous system is composed of
excitable cells called neurons
 Neurons have long thin extensions which
carry electrical nerve impulses
 The electrical signal of the nerve impulse
needs to be converted into a chemical signal
(a neurotransmitter) so that it can pass from
nerve cell to nerve cell
 The neurotransmitter is destroyed after the
signal has passed on. © 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS
The nervous system
organisation
 A Central Nervous System (CNS) made of the
brain and spinal cord…
 and peripheral nerves connecting it to
sensors and effectors
Central Nervous
System
Sensory nerve Motor nerve

Receptor or Sensor Effector


eg photoreceptor eg muscle or gland

Stimulus Response
© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS
Hormone pathway
Endocrine cell
Hormone
synthesis
Hormone
precursors
Hormone stored
Stimulus acts on in vesicles
receptor site or
directly inside cell Hormone secreted
into the blood
stream

Chemicals stimulating the


release of the hormone © 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS
Hormone pathway

Hormone
destroyed

Hormone
receptor site

Metabolic effect

© 2016 Paul Billiet ODWS Target cell