The aim of the course is to provide the knowledge to understand how the different cells, tissues, and organs of human body work together to maintain life. We will explain: a) the biophysical characteristics of the cellular membrane and principles of cell excitability, nerve conduction and synaptic transmission; b) the physiology of various organs and systems; c) the principles of homeostasis and mechanisms of his maintenance, and d) how the nervous system acquires and processes sensory information and plans and executes motor responses.
• Introduction to human physiology and definition of homeostasis.
• Biophysics of cell membranes: resting membrane potential, equilibrium potential, and action potential.
• Anatomical and functional organization of the nervous system. Electrical and chemical synapses. Inhibitory and excitatory synapses.
• Sensation and sensory processing: somatic sensory, visual, auditory and chemosensory system.
• Movement and its central control: motor system and motor control.
• Learning and memory. Plasticity of the nervous system.
• Visceral motor system and physiological bases of cardiovascular, respiratory and renal system.
• General features of the endocrine system and description of the main functions of hormones.
- Berne-Levy, Principi di Physiology, Elsevier Mosby
- Vander’s Human Physiology, McGraw-Hill
- Stanfield, Principles of Human Physiology, Pearson
- Purves D, et al., Neuroscience, Sinauer Associates
written and oral exam
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