Animal Physiology (Biology 461)
Spring Semester 2000
Instructor: Dr. David Maxwell
Textbook: Animal Physiology: Mechanisms and Adaptations
Eckert, Randall and Augustine
Lab Manual: None
Objectives of Course
Students enrolled in this course will be expected to learn the basics of physiological
principles as they apply throughout the animal kingdom. Although the course is comparative
in scope the major emphasis will be on mammalian physiology. The major thrust of the course
will be on the molecular level. Topics to be discussed include: the action potential, the mechanism of action of hormones, the glycogenolytic cascade, generation of antibody diversity,
ruminant nutrition, receptor pharmacology etc. Appropriate laboratory experiments will be conducted to reinforce topics discussed in lecture.
Tests and Grading
The course grade will be determined by the arithmetic average of seven tests. Five of these tests will be administered in lecture and two will cover both laboratory material. Each test will
utilize a variety of question types including multiple choice, completion and discussion. The last
test will be given during the final examination week. The final examination is not comprehensive.
Average 90-100 88-89 84-87 79-83 77-78 73-76 65-72 62-64 58-61 53-57 50-52
Grade A A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D-
An average below 50 will result in a grade of F.
Regular attendance is required. Each student is alloted five absences in lecture and two in laboratory that may be taken at his (or her) discretion. No excuse is required. Each absence in excess the allotment will result in a penalty of two points to be subtracted from the final course average.
Animal Physiology (Biology 461) Lecture Topics
Section 1. Electrophysiology: the action potential, the pacemaker potential, the motor end
plate potential. Nervous regulation of the heart, neurotransmitters and receptors. Ion channels and membrane resting potential. Contractile mechanisms of muscle.
Test 1: Monday, January 31
Section 2. Mechanisms of intestinal absorption. Membrane permeability. Glucose transport molecules. Hormonal regulation of metabolism. Absorptive and postabsorptive phases of metabolism. Glycogenolysis, glycogenesis, gluconeogenesis and ketogenesis. Regulation of the phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase gene.
Test 2: Monday, February 21
Section 3. Diabetes as inappropriate postabsorptive metabolism. Ruminant metabolism
Juvenile onset diabetes as autoimmune disease. The immune response. The physiology and pathology of hemoglobin. The anemias. The physiology of carbonic anhydrase.
Test 3: Monday, March 20
Section 4: Comparative vertebrate osmoregulation. The comparative function of the nephron,
and the loop of henle and types of nitrogenous wastes. The regulation of the aldose reductase gene. Hormonal regulation of kidney function by ADH and aldosterone. The aquaporins.
Test 4: Monday, April 10
Section 5: Hormonal regulation of reproduction. The mechanism of fertilization.
The mechanism of sex determination. The neurotransmitters, myelin and nervous system diseases.
Test 5. Final Examination Week (Monday, May 8 at 10:30)
The final examination is not comprehensive.