C100 Biology

Table of Contents


Write a report about the effects of exercise on the cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, and respiratory systems.

Controlled assessment of the lymphatic system

A comparison of the types of muscle and their contraction

These systems should be critically examined in the report.

Understanding the human musculoskeletal systems

Compare and contrast the bones of the human skeleton

Describe the characteristics and movements of various types of synovial joints.

Identify two pairs skeletal muscles and describe their relationship.

Illustration of the structure and contraction of smooth, cardiac, and skeletal muscle.

Learn about the respiratory system

Identify the anatomical structure and function of the respiratory system.

Explain the relationship between the microscopic structure and function of an alveolus

Examine the changes in ventilation after exercise and at rest, and link them to homeostasis.

Learn about the circulatory system

Compare and contrast blood vessels to explain double circulation in mammalian mammals.

Analyze the structure of the mammalian cardiac cycle, and explain how it’s initiated and controlled by electrical activity.

Explain the blood’s composition and the functions of red blood cells and white blood cells.



There are many biological processes that occur throughout the body that exercise can affect.

This includes changes in muscles, lungs and brains, as well as joints and bones.

ATP and glucose are essential for muscle contraction and relaxation during exercise.

The body produces more ATP when it has a higher demand for oxygen. This results in increased breathing and increased blood pumping to the muscles (Rivera Brown and Frontera 2012).

Increased exercise means that the muscles need more oxygen. As a result, the respiratory rate rises and the lungs function faster.

To supply more blood to the muscles, the heart rate increases.

Exercise also improves brain function by increasing blood flow.

Exercise promotes brain growth, which can help boost memory and learning (Thomas and al.

Exercises are also good for maintaining a healthy bone structure.

This report provides a brief overview of each system, as well as the effects of exercising on them.

Musculoskeletal System

The musculoskeletal systems provides support, form, movement, and stability for the whole body.

It is composed of bones, muscles and joints as well as tendons, ligaments and cartilage.

Bones of the Human Skeleton

There are many types of bones in the human skeleton, including long bones, short bone, flat bones and irregular bones.

The long bones are the femur and tibia, fibula as well as the ulna, radius, humerus, ulna, and humerus.

The mechanical strength of long bones is due to their curved shape.

Short bones include the scaphoid, hamate, lunate, cuboid, first and second cuniform bone, and tarsal bone.

Cube-shaped short bones provide stability and support, with little or no movement.

Flat bones include the cranialbones, frontal and parietal bone, sternum and ribs.

These bones are thin and protect soft tissues underneath them or within them.

The irregular bones are the atlas, axis, sphenoid and zygomatic, as well as other facial bones.

These irregular bones are responsible for mechanical support because they don’t have a definite shape.

The patella is the sesamoid bone.

They form in tendons that are subject to physical stress, friction, and tension.

The sutural bones, which are tiny bones, are located between the bones in the cranium and the sutural joints (Hillson 2016).

Characteristics of Joints

There are three main types of joints in the human body: the synovial, cartilaginous, and fibrous.

The fibrous joints can be immoveable or synarthrodial.

They are linked to one another by dense connective tissue, primarily collagen.

They do not have cavities.

There are three types: syndesmoses, sutures and gomphoses.

The cartilaginous joint connects the bones that are held together by cartilage.

They can be semi-moveable, and there are two types: synchondroses or symphyses.

The synovial joints can be moved freely.

The synovial joints have a synovial capsule. This synovial membrane is responsible for secreting synovial fluid. Hyaline cartilage protects the ends of the bones.

There are five types of synovial joint: the ball and socket, saddle and condyloid, ball and socket and hinge.

The hinge joints (elbow and knee) can move in flexion and extension. The pivot joints (atlas and axis) can rotate. The ball and socket joints, shoulder and hip, allow for flexion, extension and adduction.

The movements of condyloid joints (wrist and saddle) include flexion, extension and adduction.

Gliding movements are part of the intercarpal joint’s movements (Sokoloff 2014).

Functions of Skeletal Muscle Pairs

An agonist and an antagonist make up the skeletal muscle pairs.

An antagonist is the opposite of the agonist. The agonist acts as the prime mover.

The biceps brachii and triceps bracii are located in the anterior or posterior arm compartments.

The triceps brachii is flexible, and the biceps brchii extends your forearm.

The quadriceps fimoris and the hamstrings are another pair.

The posterior part of the thigh contains the hamstrings, with 3 muscles. The quadriceps are located in the anterior portion of the thigh.

The quadriceps extends the legs, and the hamstring flexes (Jarmey & Sharkey 2016).

Skeletal, Cardiac and Smooth Muscles

The voluntary movement of the skeletal muscles is performed by them.

They can vary in their size, shape, and fiber arrangement.

The connective tissue wraps many muscle fibers in skeletal muscle.

Epimysium is the connective tissue sheath.

Fascia, which is the connective tissue outside of the epimysium, is called epimysium.

Perimysium surrounds the fasciculus, or bundle of muscle fibers.

Endomysium surrounds every muscle cell.

One single, cylindrical skeletal muscle cell is the skeletal muscle fiber.

Connective tissues protect and support muscles from contraction forces.

It is composed of blood vessels and nerves which aid in contraction (Frontera & Ochala 2015).

Myocardium, or the cardiac muscles, is a component of the heart.

It is composed of myocardium, which is located between the epicardium and endocardium.

The cardiac chambers and valves are lined by the endocardium.

The heart is protected, lubricated and surrounded by Epicardium.

Cardiomyocytes make up the myocardium.

The contraction of the cardiac muscles is called systole, which squeezes blood from the heart. After that, diastole occurs.

The blood is pushed to the ventricles by the atria, and the ventricles push it out of the heart by contracting (Canale Campbell and Smolich 2012).

Involuntary movements are performed by smooth muscles.

They do not have striated fibers and are small and tapered.

Smooth muscle fibers have an nucleus in the middle.

Constrictions are created by smooth muscle contractions.

This is part of the digestive system.

It aids in fluid movement throughout the body, and eliminates undigested matter (Campbell & Campbell 2012).

Exercise and the Musculoskeletal System

Exercise can have a positive effect on the musculoskeletal systems.

Exercise results in an increase in lean muscle mass. This leads to improved energy metabolism, posture, support for the whole body, bone density, balance, coordination, and better posture.

It increases the range of joint motions, and improves metabolic rate.

It helps to maintain joint flexibility and increases the secretion of synovial fluid.

Exercise can increase the metabolism activity, which helps in burning calories and increasing body mass (Vincent Raiser and Vincent 2012).

Figure 1: Exercise and the effects on the musculoskeletal systems

Source: Pedersen & Febbraio 2012

Respiratory System

The complex respiratory system helps with the exhalation and inhalation of gases such as oxygen and carbon dioxide.

Anatomy and Function

The respiratory system is made up of biological structures such as the nose, nasal cavity, mouth, larynx and trachea. It also includes the bronchi, the bronchioles and lungs.

The nasal cavity is protected and supported by the nose.

The harmful substances in the air are trapped by the mucous membranes.

The process involves heating the outside air to warm it before it enters the respiratory tract. At exhalation the warmth from the warm air is returned back into the nasal cavity.

The mouth is an alternative to the nasal air and helps to replenish the oxygen inhaled.

The pharynx is composed of the nasopharynx (oropharynx) and laryngopharynx (laryngopharynx).

It serves as an intermediary between the nasal cavity, larynx, or esophagus.

The epiglottis redirects the air from the laryngopharynx to the larynx.

The larynx is the link between the laryngopharynx and the trachea.

The vocal folds, thyroid, cricoids cartilage, and epiglottis make up the larynx.

These cartilages provide protection and support for the vocal folds as well as the larynx.

Vocal folds are essential for sound development.

The trachea is made up of hyaline cartilage rings which keep the trachea open for air intake.

The trachea’s open end faces the esophagus, which allows food pieces to pass through.

The trachea is a connecting bronchi to larynx and filters air entering the lungs.

The epithelium captures harmful particles.

The trachea’s lower end branches into the primary and secondary bronchi.

They then branch out into smaller bronchi in the lungs.

Secondary bronchi transport air to the lungs, and then split into the secondary bronchi.

The tertiary and secondary bronchi are split into bronchioles.

They regulate the airflow to the lungs and trap harmful contaminants.

There are many sacs in the lungs called alveoli.

The alveoli allow for exchange of the respiratory gases and blood that runs through the capillaries.

The muscles around the lungs allow for continuous inhalation or exhalation of air (Ionescu 2013,

Structure and Function of Alveoli

There are microscopic branches, called respiratory bronchioles, that make up the lungs.

These branches are connected to alveolar ducts.

Alveolar sacs are located at the end of the alveolar conduits. Each alveolar sac contains 20-30 alveoli and is 200-300 micrometers in diameter.

Alveolar membranes are one-cell thick and in direct contact with capillaries.

Due to the large area of the alveoli and the thin membranes, gases can easily diffuse across the walls.

The oxygen in inhaled air is absorbed through the capillaries and walls into red blood cells. This in turn transports oxygen to the tissues.

The body’s carbon dioxide is then returned to the alveoli. It diffuses through the respiratory membranes and into the exhaled air.

Figure 2: Alveoli and lungs

Exercise and Ventilation: The Effects of Exercise on Ventilation and Relation to Homeostasis

Ventilation rates at rest range from 5-6 liters/minute, but increase when you exercise to reach 100 liters/minute.

The rate at which you exercise increases the ventilation rates.

Exercise increases the oxygen consumption.

A healthy young man’s resting oxygen consumption is 250ml/minute. High endurance exercise can lead to oxygen consumptions of up to 5000ml/minute.

An increase in pulmonary ventilation can be caused by an increased respiratory rate or tidal volume. This creates a balance between increasing oxygen uptake and decreasing carbon dioxide release.

The sudden increase in ventilation occurs when you start exercising. After that, it slows down.

Exercise increases energy consumption and activates energy-generating reactions. This helps maintain homeostasis.

To maintain a healthy body, an increased heart rate helps to transport oxygen to cells.

Exercise heat helps maintain body temperature balance, while sweating removes that heat (Lekeux Art and Hodgson 2013, respectively).

Cardiovascular and Circulatory System

Types of Blood Vessels

There are three types of blood vessels in the human body.

These blood vessels are called arteries, veins, and capillaries.

The arteries carry blood from the heart.

The arteries split into arterioles which then divide to create capillaries.

The blood flows through the arteries by frictional resistance from the inner wall.

The inner layer of the arteries stretches during heart beats. While the outer layer acts like a thick cover, the middle layer is elastic.

Elastic stretch and recoil maintain the pressure.

The blood is returned to the heart by the veins.

Deoxygenated blood is carried by the systemic veins.

Superior and inferior veins return blood from the body back to the heart.

A thin outer layer known as tunica adventitia is found within the vein’s inner layer, while tunica intima is located outside.

Because the veins are larger than arteries, blood flow is slower.

The capillaries are the smallest blood vessels.

The capillaries are where gases, nutrients, and wastes exchange between blood and tissues.

Double circulation refers to the presence of two loops. One loop carries oxygenated blood, the other deoxygenated (Abramson 2013, Abramson).

Structure of the Heart

The heart is responsible for controlling the circulatory system and pumping blood throughout the body.

The heart is a dark-red muscle that attaches to the vein, pulmonary artery, and venacava.

The atria, ventricles and internal parts of the heart are made up of the ventricles.

The ventricles are separated by the atrioventricular and ventricles by the semilunar, pulmonary artery, and aorta valves.

Glass, Hunter, and McCulloch 2012 show that the atrial walls are thin while the ventricular walls thicken (Glass.

The diastole, atrial and ventral systoles are the components of the cardiac cycle.

The heart is full of blood during diastole.

Blood flows from the venacava, pulmonary veins to both the ventricles and atria.

The atrial systole is when the atria contract, thereby pumping more blood into the ventricles.

The ventricular systole is when the ventricles contract and the blood keeps the atrioventricular vales closed. This prevents blood from entering the atria.

The semilunar valves become open when the pressure rises, forcing blood out of the heart and into the arteries.

A decrease in pressure causes the semilunar and atrioventricular valves of the heart to close.

The heart beat is controlled by signals generated by the electrical system.

This heartbeat pumps blood throughout the body.

The electrical system also includes the His-purkinje, sinoatrial and atrioventricular nodes.

The electrical signals cause the heart chambers contraction and relaxation.

This is vital during the cardiac cycle.

Blood Composition and Associated Functions

Plasma, red and white cells, and platelets make up blood.

The red blood cells transport oxygen to the body, and carbon dioxide to the lungs. While the white blood cells fight infection and are part of the immune system and help with clotting, platelets are necessary for blood clotting.

The lymphatic system is made up of lymph fluid that contains white blood cells. This lymph fluid helps fight infections and removes unwanted toxins from your body (Bain, 2014).

Cardiovascular System Effects of Exercise

Exercise can improve blood circulation, blood flow, blood pressure, blood pressure, and stress-related hormone levels.

Figure 3: Exercise and the effects on the cardiovascular system

Source: Golbidi & Laher 2012


This report discusses the effects of exercise on the musculoskeletal, respiratory and cardiovascular systems.

Exercise has a number of effects on the musculoskeletal systems. These include increased blood flow, increased muscle mass, muscle coordination, and increased blood supply.

Exercise can affect the respiratory system by increasing breathing rates, oxygen uptake, blood supply to the lung, functional and vital capacity, and increased diffusion of gases such as carbon dioxide.

Exercise can also increase heart rate and blood flow.

Exercise is essential to maintain proper body functions.

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A brief overview of the structure and function of the skeleton muscle.

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