Learning outcomes of the course unit
The student will have to demonstrate knowledge and understanding (1st Dublin descriptor) of the basic principles of Physiology. The course aims to provide students with a good understanding of:
1. Mechanisms for basic operation of the human body under physiological conditions,
2. Homeostatic mechanisms that allow adjusting and adapting the activity of organs and systems to the demands of the environment.
The student shall be able to learn the principles of Physiology (5th Dublin descriptor), apply the acquired knowledge to the human body (2nd Dublin descriptor), must be able to independently assess simple physiological problems (3rd Dublin descriptor), and be able to communicate them (4th Dublin descriptor).
Knowledge of human anatomy, chemistry and physics as the lessons learned in previous courses
Course contents summary
The first part of the course covers cell physiology.
The second part of the course is devoted to the organ and system physiology.
The third part of the course is devoted to integrative physiology, with particular reference to the nervous system.
Biological membranes. Ion channels. Nernst equation. Membrane potential. Action potential. Conduction of potential. Synapses and neurotransmitters. Neuromodulators. Synaptic circuits.
Skeletal muscle. Contraction. Stress / length and speed / load curves.
Heart: Cardiac action potentials. Electrocardiogram. Cardiac mechanics. Regulation of cardiac contraction. Blood pressure. Blood.
Respiratory mechanics. Compliance. Capillary exchanges. Nervous control of breathing.
Kidney. Filtration, absorption and secretion. Renal clearance.
Regulation of pH and electrolyte balance.
GI tract: motility, secretion, digestion and absorption. Endocrinology. Neurophysiology
Sensory Systems: Vision. Hearing. Somatosensory systems. Pain perception and modulation.
Motor control. Reflexes.
Autonomic nervous system: sympathetic and parasympathetic.
Hypothalamus and pituitary gland
Circulation and blood pressure. Smooth muscle. Lymphatic system. Special circulatory districts. Respiratory function. Kidney.
GI tract and its functions. Hormones.
Nerve cell functions. Membrane potential. Synapses. Reflexes. Sensory systems. Sleep. Homeostasis. Autonomous nervous system. Hypothalamus-hypophysis.
Berne- Levy, Fisiologia, CEA
Monticelli Fisiologia, CEA
Fisiologia medica a cura di Fiorenzo Conti. Volume 1. Edi-Ermes editore
Lectures, during which the principles of the discipline will be exposed and the main issues will be discussed with appropriate practical examples. The lectures will be in presence and online (using Teams and Elly platforms). More information will follow according to COVID-19 infection. The principles of physiology will be exemplified with practical cases. Students are invited to ask questions. Practical exercises will be done on correct blood pressure measurement (not so obvious), electrocardiography and spirometry.
Assessment methods and criteria
To take the exam it will be necessary to upload, before the date of the appeal, the identity document on Onedrive platform through the following link:
The exam will be in written form and will consist of 30 questions true/ false without penalty in case of errors. The knowledge acquired on the topics addressed during the lessons will be verified. Every correct answer will be assigned 0.8 points (max=24, in the case of decimals it is rounded to the next higher digit). Who earns 14.4 points at least (=18 right answers), will discuss a topic of the course, in oral form. The minimum threshold for passing the exam is 18 points, corresponding to 18/30. The results will be published on the Esse3 portal. The test will be carried out using the Socrative platform: https://b.socrative.com/login/student/ .To enter, login as student and enter the room. When each student has answered the 30 questions the Socrative platform automatically generates the number of right answers. To take the exam it will be essential to connect to Teams platform and it will be necessary, throughout the examination, keep on the audio/ video connections. Students will have 30 minutes to take the exam.
Before each exam, after the expiring of the dead line for registration, all students will receive an email by Essetre, with the necessary instructions for connecting to the links of Onedrive, Socrative and Teams.
For any clarification students can contact Prof. Maria Alessandra Umilta’ by email: firstname.lastname@example.org