Integrated Physiology

Physiology is a scientific discipline devoted to understanding the functions of the body. It addresses function at multiple levels, including molecular, cellular, organ, and system. An appreciation of the processes that occur at each level is necessary to understand function in health and the dysfunction associated with disease. Homeostasis and integration are fundamental principles of physiology that account for the relative constancy of organ processes and bodily function even in the face of substantial environmental changes. This constancy results from integrative, cooperative interactions of chemical and electrical signaling processes within and between cells, organs and systems. This series on the broad field of physiology covers the major organ systems from an integrative perspective that addresses the molecular and cellular processes that contribute to homeostasis. Material on pathophysiology is also included throughout the books. These state-of-the-art treatises were produced by leading experts in the field of physiology. Each book includes stand-alone information and is intended to be of value to students, scientists, and clinicians in the biomedical sciences. Since physiological concepts are an ever-changing work-in-progress, each contributor will have the opportunity to make periodic updates of the covered material.

Editor Bios


Alveolar Structure and Function Alveolar Structure and Function
D. Keith Payne, Adam Wellikoff
In the distal regions of the human lung, one of the most challenging problems facing a large multicellular organism is solved; ensuring an adequate supply of oxygen for aerobic tissue metabolism while removing associated waste products. Conduits for ...
Publication Date: 11/01/2012

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Airway Epithelium Airway Epithelium
Jonathan Widdicombe
The airways are lined with a film of fluid ∼10 μm deep that acts as the first line of defense against inhaled pathogens, dirt, and noxious vapors. Transepithelial fluid movements driven by active transepithelial ion transport serve to regulate the...
Publication Date: 11/01/2012

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Neural Control of Gastrointestinal Function Neural Control of Gastrointestinal Function
David Grundy, Simon Brookes
The gastrointestinal tract is a long, muscular tube responsible for the digestion of food, assimilation of nutrients and elimination of waste. This is achieved by secretion of digestive enzymes and absorption from the intestinal lumen, with different...
Publication Date: 01/01/2012

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Intestinal Water and Electrolyte Transport Intestinal Water and Electrolyte Transport
Mrinalini Rao, Jayashree Sarathy (nee Venkatasubramanian), Mei Ao
The unique architecture and physiology of the mammalian intestine, together with a tightly coordinated regulatory system, allows for the handling and absorption of as much as 9 L of fluid a day with 98% or greater efficiency. Advances in the past 40 ...
Publication Date: 01/01/2012

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The Ocular Circulation The Ocular Circulation
Jeffrey Kiel
This presentation describes the unique anatomy and physiology of the vascular beds that serve the eye. The needs for an unobstructed light path from the cornea to the retina and a relatively fixed corneal curvature and distance between refractive str...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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The Exocrine Pancreas The Exocrine Pancreas
Stephen Pandol
The secretions of the exocrine pancreas provide for digestion of a meal into components that are then available for processing and absorption by the intestinal epithelium. Without the exocrine pancreas, malabsorption and malnutrition result. This cha...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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The Enteric Microbiota The Enteric Microbiota
Francisco Guarner
The human gut is the natural habitat for a diverse and dynamic microbial ecosystem having an important impact on health and disease. Bacteria have lived in and on animal hosts since multicellular life evolved about 1 billion years ago. Hosts provide ...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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The Endothelium, Part II The Endothelium, Part II
Michel Feletou
The endothelium controls vascular tone by releasing various vasoactive substances. Additionally, another pathway associated with the hyperpolarization of both endothelial and vascular smooth muscle cells contributes also to endothelium-dependent rela...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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The Endothelium, Part I The Endothelium, Part I
Michel Feletou
The endothelium, a monolayer of endothelial cells, constitutes the inner cellular lining of the blood vessels (arteries, veins and capillaries) and the lymphatic system, and therefore is in direct contact with the blood/lymph and the circulating cell...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Skeletal Muscle Circulation Skeletal Muscle Circulation
Ronald Korthuis
The aim of this treatise is to summarize the current understanding of the mechanisms for blood flow control to skeletal muscle under resting conditions, how perfusion is elevated (exercise hyperemia) to meet the increased demand for oxygen and other ...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Regulation of Tissue Oxygenation Regulation of Tissue Oxygenation
Roland Pittman
This presentation describes various aspects of the regulation of tissue oxygenation, including the roles of the circulatory system, respiratory system, and blood, the carrier of oxygen within these components of the cardiorespiratory system. The resp...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Regulation of Endothelial Barrier Function Regulation of Endothelial Barrier Function
Sarah Yuan, Robert Rigor
The vascular endothelium lining the inner surface of blood vessels serves as the first interface for circulating blood components to interact with cells of the vascular wall and surrounding extravascular tissues. In addition to regulating blood deliv...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Regulation of Cardiac Contractility Regulation of Cardiac Contractility
R. John Solaro
Contractility describes the relative ability of the heart to eject a stroke volume (SV) at a given prevailing afterload (arterial pressure) and preload (end-diastolic volume; EDV). Various measures of contractility are related to the fraction as the ...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Reactive Oxygen Species and the Cardiovascular System Reactive Oxygen Species and the Cardiovascular System
Augusto Montezano, Rhian Touyz
Reactive oxygen species (ROS) influence various physiological processes including host defense, hormone biosynthesis, and cellular signaling. Increased ROS production (oxidative stress) is implicated in many diseases of the cardiovascular system, inc...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Neural Control of Renal Function Neural Control of Renal Function
Ulla Kopp
The kidney is innervated with efferent sympathetic nerve fibers reaching the renal vasculature, the tubules, the juxtaglomerular granular cells, and the renal pelvic wall. The renal sensory nerves are mainly found in the renal pelvic wall. Increases ...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Motor Function of the Pharynx, Esophagus, and its Sphincters Motor Function of the Pharynx, Esophagus, and its Sphincters
Ravinder Mittal
Deglutition or a swallow begins as a voluntary act in the oral cavity but proceeds autonomously in the pharynx and esophagus. Bilateral sequenced activation and inhibition of more than 25 pairs of muscles of mouth, pharynx, larynx, and esophagus is r...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Intestinal Immune System Intestinal Immune System
Soichiro Miura, Ryota Hokari, Shunsuke Komoto
In the intestine, a unique immunological system that is different from the systemic immune system exists to provide adaptive immunity in response to luminal bacteria and dietary antigens. There are many lymphoid cell aggregates called gut-associated ...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Hemorheology and Hemodynamics Hemorheology and Hemodynamics
Giles Cokelet
From the perspective of blood flow, blood has some unusual properties: it is a suspension of blood cells of which the red blood cells are most numerous and are both deformable (at moderate and high flow rates) and will aggregate under conditions of s...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Heme Oxygenase and the Kidney Heme Oxygenase and the Kidney
David Stec
Heme oxygenases (HOs) are the enzymes responsible for the breakdown of heme and the generation of biliverdin/bilirubin and carbon monoxide (CO). The kidney is a complex organ consisting of many different cell types all working together for the single...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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Enteric Nervous System Enteric Nervous System
Jackie D. Wood
Minute-to-minute behavior of the alimentary tract reflects the integrated functioning of the gut's musculature, secretory glands and blood-lymphatic vasculature. Activity of the three effector systems to generate functionally effective patterns of be...
Publication Date: 01/01/2011

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