Sunday, 29 January 2012

2.82 Communication

Describe how responses can be controlled by nervous or by hormonal communication and understand the differences between the two systems.


1. The part on the left of the diagram (the cell body), would be embedded in our spine and on the other end it would be connected to an effector, and in this case, the muscle fibres. The electrical impulse or the nerve impulse is carried inside the walls from the cell body to the synaptic knot where it connects to the muscles through the axon which can be as long as one meter and only one cell wide. In Mammals the axon would be surrounded by another type of cell known as the Schwann cell and these contain a great deal of fat and these form the myelin sheath. The effect of having a myelin sheet is that it increases the speed of nerveconduction and this is one way of connecting the coordinator to the effector.

Diagram of the Motor nerve:


2. The second way is known as the endocrine system. This involves the Endocrine gland which produces chemicals (hormones) which can be either protein or steroids. An example would be the adrenal gland, the adrenal gland would be secreting adrenaline to the blood which will travel through the blood stream and will arrive at the organ it affects (target tissue) and will have an effect upon it. It is possible for hormones to have multiple targets and bring about multiple effects.

Difference between Nerves and Hormones:

  • Nerve impulses are fast, Hormones normally take longer.
  • Nerve impulses re sent through neurons whereas hormones are sent through blood.
  • Nerve impulses enables body to response to external environment and the hormones enable body to respond to internal environment

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