cod. 05319

Academic year 2018/19
2° year of course - First semester
LUPPINO Giuseppe, TIRINDELLI Roberto, ROZZI Stefano
Academic discipline
Fisiologia (BIO/09)
Morfologia umana, funzioni biologiche integrate degli organi ed apparati umani
Type of training activity
108 hours
of face-to-face activities
9 credits
course unit

Learning objectives

The knowledge of the functional mechanisms of the human organs and apparati addressed during the course, the knowledge of their dynamic integration and the general mechanisms of functional control in normal conditions and in particular pathological conditions.


Students must possess basic and fundamental notions of Anatomy, cell and tissue biology and biochemistry of the organs and systems which are the topic of this part of the course.

Course unit content

The course addresses the physiology of the human body, by focusing on the general processes, the cardiovascular and respiratory systems and the stomatognathic apparatus.

Full programme

The cell membrane
Cell membrane structure; membrane proteins; transport mechanisms across membranes.
Electrical properties of membranes
Electrochemical gradients; passive and active ion channels; resting membrane potential; passive electrical properties of the membrane; action potential, genesis and conduction; classification of nerve fibers.
Synaptic mechanisms
Electrical and chemical synapses; neuromuscular transmission; synapses in the central nervous system, neurotransmitters; receptors.
Methods for studying the functions of the central nervous system
Organization of the spinal cord; spinal reflexes
Organization of the brainstem; vestibular system; posture
Sensory systems: somatosensory system, visual system

Cardiovascular apparatus (Prof. Rozzi). Physical principles of hemodynamics. Physical properties of blood. Miocardial properties: rhythm, conduction, excitability, contraction. Heart electrophysiology. Ionic theories of resting and action potentials. Electrocardiogram. Heart mechanics and the cardiac cycle. Cardiac output. Intrinsic and extrinsic regulation of heart activity. The vascular system. Passive mechanical properties. Vascular smooth muscles. Nervous and endocrine regulation of blood vessels. Blood pressure; systolic, diastolic, mean and pulsatory. Measuring blood pressure. Venous pressure and blood circulation. Arterial and venous pulse. Coronaric circulation and and heart metabolism. Local circulation: muscle, skin, kidney, splancnic. Brain circulation: chemical, metabolic and nervous regulation.

Respiratory Apparatus (Prof. Rozzi). Physical laws of gases. Chest and respiration muscles. Alveolar and pulmunary ventilation. Lung volumes and capacities. Anatomic and functional dead space. Mechanics of breathing. Intra-pulmunary and intra-pleural pressures. Compliance. Pressure-volume curves. Airway resistance. Work of breathing. Inspirated air, alveolar air, and expirated air. Blood-tissue gas exchange in the lung: relationships between ventilation and alveolar pressures of gases. Distribution of ventilation. Gas exchange between alveoli and capillaries. Blood transport of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Pulmunary circulation. Ventilation-perfusion relationships. Respiratory centers: Genesis of the rhythm of respiration. Ventilation responses to variation in alveolar pressures of oxygen and carbon dioxide. Chemical and central regulation of respiration.

Physiology of the stomatognathic apparatus. (Prof. Roberto Tirindelli)
Salivary secretion; salivary fluid composition; Function of the salivary fluid, Metabolism of calcium and phosphate.
Sensorial aspect of the neurophysiology of the stomatognathic apparatus: Mechanoreception, Thermoception, Nociception.
Motor aspects of the neurophysiology of the stomatognathic apparatus: Masticatory muscles and the masticatory mechanics; Trigeminal reflexes; Control mandibular and body posture;


Fiorenzo Conti (a cura di)-Fisiologia Medica. Edi-Ermes Editore.

Fisiologia Orale e dell’apparato stomatognatico

Teaching methods

Frontal lectures with audio-visual material.

Assessment methods and criteria

Learning is verified by means of an oral examination.

Other information

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