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Chapter 3 : Coordination and Response

1) Internal Stimuli = Changes in blood osmotic pressure,, blood glucose level,

carbon dioxide and oxygen levels.
2) External stimuli = changes in light intensity, sound, temperature, pressure
and touch.
3) Components of nervous system ( page 401 )
4) Nervous system divided into CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM (CNS) and the
5) Central nervous centre consist of brain and spinal cord
6) Peripheral nervous system consists of 12 pairs of cranial nerves and 31 pairs
of spinal nerves.
7) The nervous system performs 3 main functions : SENSORY, INTEGRATIVE AND
8) Sensory function involves sensory receptors.
9) Sensory receptors detect stimuli from both the internal and external
environment and initiate nerve impulses that carry information to the CNS.
The CNS processes and integrates the information by analyzing and
storing some of it.
Motor commands from CNS are transmitted to the effectors, the
muscles or glands to carry out responses.

Transmission pathway of information

1. Receptors in the ear pick up the ringing of the doorbell.

2. The receptors trigger nerve impulses in the afferent neurons.

3. The nerve impulses pass from the afferent neurons to the interneurons in
the brain
4. The brain interprets the nerve impulses from many interneurons that
doorbell is ringing. The brain also decides to open the door.
5. From the interneurones, nerve impulses are transmitted to the efferent
neurons then to muscles.
6. The muscles in the arm carry out response and open the door.

Transmission of information across synapses

1. Nerve impulse is conducted along the axon of a neurone until it reaches
the synaptic terminal.
2. Beyond the synaptic terminal is a narrow space known as synaptic cleft
that separates the synaptic terminal from the dendrite of receiving
neurone, a muscle cell or a gland cell.
3. Transmission of information across synapses :
Involves the conversion of electrical signals into chemical signs in the
form of neurotransmitters.
Reconversion of the chemical signals into electrical signals at the
postsynaptic membrane
Transmission of nerve impulses across synapses is an active process
which rquires energy
Synaptic terminal contains a lot of mitochondria to generate energy.
After neurotransmitters ( noradrenaline, serotonin, dopamine ) relayed
its message ,
a) Rapidly broken down by enzymes or taken up by synaptic terminal
and recycled.
b) Ensures that the effect of a neurotransmitter is brief and precise.
Functions of synapses
a) Controlling and integrating the nerve impulses transmitted by the
stimulated receptors.
b) Facilitating the transmission of nerve impulses in one direction.
c) A nerve impulse cannot go backwards only present in the synaptic
terminals. Only the presynaptic membrane can discharge
neurotransmitters. Receptors are only present in the postsynaptic
membrane. This means only the postsynaptic membrane can
receive a chemical signal.

Voluntary actions and involuntary actions

A) Voluntary actions

Controlled by the cerebral cortex of the cerebrum.

Information that reaches the cerebral cortex or the conscious level
results in a perception of the external environment.
sensory (afferent) neurone
motor (efferent) neurone

B) Involuntary actions
Involve the skeletal muscles allow on immediate action that does not
require conscious effort.
Example : finger touches a hot stove, the reaction is to pull
immediately without having to think about it.
If the responses to stimuli are involuntary, they are called reflex action.
Reflex action are rapid, automatic, or involuntary responses to stimuli
A reflex arc is the path way by which nerve impulses travel from the
receptor to the effector in a reflex action.
Reflex arc in which nerve impulses are transmitted along neurons in
spinal cord.
a) A sharp pin pierces the skin, causing the sensory receptors in the
skin to generate nerve impulses.
b) The never impulses are transmitted along an afferent neurone
toward the spinal cord.
c) In the spinal cord, the nerve impulses are transmitted from the
afferent neurone to an interneurone.
d) From the interneurone , the nerve impulses are transmitted to an
efferent neurone.
e) The efferent neurone carries the nerve impulses from the spinal
cord to the effector ( muscle tissue ) so that the pin can be pulled
out from the skin immediately.

Role of hormones in the human

1. Endocrine system consist of a number of gland that secrete hormones.
2. Hormones are chemical messengers produced by the endocrine glands
3. Hormones only affect and influence specific target cells.

4. Once hormone binds to its target cell, the hormone causes the cell to respond
in a specific manner.

The nervous system

1) Consists of a network of nerve
2) Controls voluntary and involuntary
3) Conveys electrical signals ( nerve
impulse )
4) Messages are conducted via
5) Messages are conveyed rapidly
6) Messages are carried to specific
7) Responses or effects are
temporary and reversible

The endocrine system

1) Consists of numerous glands
2) Controls involuntary actions
3) Conveys chemical signals
4) Messages are conveyed via the
5) Messages are conveyed slowly.
6) Messages are carried to various
7) Responses ore effects are long
lasting and irreversible.