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For the scientific journal, see Physiology (journal). Physiology_sentence_0

Physiology (/ˌfɪziˈɒlədʒi/; from Ancient Greek φύσις (physis) 'nature, origin', and -λογία (-logia) 'study of') is the scientific study of functions and mechanisms in a living system. Physiology_sentence_1

As a sub-discipline of biology, physiology focuses on how organisms, organ systems, individual organs, cells, and biomolecules carry out the chemical and physical functions in a living system. Physiology_sentence_2

According to the classes of organisms, the field can be divided into medical physiology, animal physiology, plant physiology, cell physiology, and comparative physiology. Physiology_sentence_3

Central to physiological functioning are biophysical and biochemical processes, homeostatic control mechanisms, and communication between cells. Physiology_sentence_4

Physiological state is the condition of normal function, while pathological state refers to abnormal conditions, including human diseases. Physiology_sentence_5

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine is awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences for exceptional scientific achievements in physiology related to the field of medicine. Physiology_sentence_6

Foundations of physiology Physiology_section_0

History Physiology_section_1

The classical era Physiology_section_2

The study of human physiology as a medical field originates in classical Greece, at the time of Hippocrates (late 5th century BC). Physiology_sentence_7

Outside of Western tradition, early forms of physiology or anatomy can be reconstructed as having been present at around the same time in China, India and elsewhere. Physiology_sentence_8

Hippocrates incorporated his belief system called the theory of humours, which consisted of four basic substance: earth, water, air and fire. Physiology_sentence_9

Each substance is known for having a corresponding humour: black bile, phlegm, blood and yellow bile, respectively. Physiology_sentence_10

Hippocrates also noted some emotional connections to the four humours, which Claudius Galenus would later expand on. Physiology_sentence_11

The critical thinking of Aristotle and his emphasis on the relationship between structure and function marked the beginning of physiology in Ancient Greece. Physiology_sentence_12

Like Hippocrates, Aristotle took to the humoral theory of disease, which also consisted of four primary qualities in life: hot, cold, wet and dry. Physiology_sentence_13

Claudius Galenus (c. 130–200 AD), known as Galen of Pergamum, was the first to use experiments to probe the functions of the body. Physiology_sentence_14

Unlike Hippocrates, Galen argued that humoral imbalances can be located in specific organs, including the entire body. Physiology_sentence_15

His modification of this theory better equipped doctors to make more precise diagnoses. Physiology_sentence_16

Galen also played off of Hippocrates idea that emotions were also tied to the humours, and added the notion of temperaments: sanguine corresponds with blood; phlegmatic is tied to phlegm; yellow bile is connected to choleric; and black bile corresponds with melancholy. Physiology_sentence_17

Galen also saw the human body consisting of three connected systems: the brain and nerves, which are responsible for thoughts and sensations; the heart and arteries, which give life; and the liver and veins, which can be attributed to nutrition and growth. Physiology_sentence_18

Galen was also the founder of experimental physiology. Physiology_sentence_19

And for the next 1,400 years, Galenic physiology was a powerful and influential tool in medicine. Physiology_sentence_20

Early modern period Physiology_section_3

Jean Fernel (1497–1558), a French physician, introduced the term "physiology". Physiology_sentence_21

Galen, Ibn al-Nafis, Michael Servetus, Realdo Colombo, Amato Lusitano and William Harvey, are credited as making important discoveries in the circulation of the blood. Physiology_sentence_22

Santorio Santorio in 1610s was the first to use a device to measure the pulse rate (the pulsilogium), and a thermoscope to measure temperature. Physiology_sentence_23

In 1791 Luigi Galvani described the role of electricity in nerves of dissected frogs. Physiology_sentence_24

In 1811, César Julien Jean Legallois studied respiration in animal dissection and lesions and found the center of respiration in the medulla oblongata. Physiology_sentence_25

In the same year, Charles Bell finished work on what would later become known as the Bell-Magendie law, which compared functional differences between dorsal and ventral roots of the spinal cord. Physiology_sentence_26

In 1824, François Magendie described the sensory roots and produced the first evidence of the cerebellum's role in equilibration to complete the Bell-Magendie law. Physiology_sentence_27

In the 1820s, the French physiologist Henri Milne-Edwards introduced the notion of physiological division of labor, which allowed to "compare and study living things as if they were machines created by the industry of man." Physiology_sentence_28

Inspired in the work of Adam Smith, Milne-Edwards wrote that the "body of all living beings, whether animal or plant, resembles a factory ... where the organs, comparable to workers, work incessantly to produce the phenomena that constitute the life of the individual." Physiology_sentence_29

In more differentiated organisms, the functional labor could be apportioned between different instruments or systems (called by him as appareils). Physiology_sentence_30

In 1858, Joseph Lister studied the cause of blood coagulation and inflammation that resulted after previous injuries and surgical wounds. Physiology_sentence_31

He later discovered and implemented antiseptics in the operating room, and as a result, decreased death rate from surgery by a substantial amount. Physiology_sentence_32

The Physiological Society was founded in London in 1876 as a dining club. Physiology_sentence_33

The American Physiological Society (APS) is a nonprofit organization that was founded in 1887. Physiology_sentence_34

The Society is, "devoted to fostering education, scientific research, and dissemination of information in the physiological sciences." Physiology_sentence_35

In 1891, Ivan Pavlov performed research on "conditional responses" that involved dogs' saliva production in response to a bell and visual stimuli. Physiology_sentence_36

In the 19th century, physiological knowledge began to accumulate at a rapid rate, in particular with the 1838 appearance of the Cell theory of Matthias Schleiden and Theodor Schwann. Physiology_sentence_37

It radically stated that organisms are made up of units called cells. Physiology_sentence_38

Claude Bernard's (1813–1878) further discoveries ultimately led to his concept of milieu interieur (internal environment), which would later be taken up and championed as "homeostasis" by American physiologist Walter B. Cannon in 1929. Physiology_sentence_39

By homeostasis, Cannon meant "the maintenance of steady states in the body and the physiological processes through which they are regulated." Physiology_sentence_40

In other words, the body's ability to regulate its internal environment. Physiology_sentence_41

William Beaumont was the first American to utilize the practical application of physiology. Physiology_sentence_42

Nineteenth-century physiologists such as Michael Foster, Max Verworn, and Alfred Binet, based on Haeckel's ideas, elaborated what came to be called "general physiology", a unified science of life based on the cell actions, later renamed in the 20th century as cell biology. Physiology_sentence_43

Late modern period Physiology_section_4

In the 20th century, biologists became interested in how organisms other than human beings function, eventually spawning the fields of comparative physiology and ecophysiology. Physiology_sentence_44

Major figures in these fields include Knut Schmidt-Nielsen and George Bartholomew. Physiology_sentence_45

Most recently, evolutionary physiology has become a distinct subdiscipline. Physiology_sentence_46

In 1920, August Krogh won the Nobel Prize for discovering how, in capillaries, blood flow is regulated. Physiology_sentence_47

In 1954, Andrew Huxley and Hugh Huxley, alongside their research team, discovered the sliding filaments in skeletal muscle, known today as the sliding filament theory. Physiology_sentence_48

Recently, there have been intense debates about the vitality of physiology as a discipline (Is it dead or alive?). Physiology_sentence_49

If physiology is perhaps less visible nowadays than during the golden age of the 19th century, it is in large part because the field has given birth to some of the most active domains of today's biological sciences, such as neuroscience, endocrinology, and immunology. Physiology_sentence_50

Furthermore, physiology is still often seen as an integrative discipline, which can put together into a coherent framework data coming from various different domains. Physiology_sentence_51

Notable physiologists Physiology_section_5

Main article: List of physiologists Physiology_sentence_52

Women in physiology Physiology_section_6

Initially, women were largely excluded from official involvement in any physiological society. Physiology_sentence_53

The American Physiological Society, for example, was founded in 1887 and included only men in its ranks. Physiology_sentence_54

In 1902, the American Physiological Society elected Ida Hyde as the first female member of the society. Physiology_sentence_55

Hyde, a representative of the American Association of University Women and a global advocate for gender equality in education, attempted to promote gender equality in every aspect of science and medicine. Physiology_sentence_56

Soon thereafter, in 1913, J.S. Physiology_sentence_57 Haldane proposed that women be allowed to formally join The Physiological Society, which had been founded in 1876. Physiology_sentence_58

On 3 July 1915, six women were officially admitted: Florence Buchanan, Winifred Cullis, Ruth C. Skelton, Sarah C. M. Sowton, Constance Leetham Terry, and Enid M. Tribe. Physiology_sentence_59

The centenary of the election of women was celebrated in 2015 with the publication of the book "Women Physiologists: Centenary Celebrations And Beyond For The Physiological Society." Physiology_sentence_60

(ISBN 978-0-9933410-0-7) Physiology_sentence_61

Prominent women physiologists include: Physiology_sentence_62


Subdisciplines Physiology_section_7

There are many ways to categorize the subdisciplines of physiology: Physiology_sentence_63


Physiological societies Physiology_section_8

Transnational physiological societies include: Physiology_sentence_64


National physiological societies include: Physiology_sentence_65


See also Physiology_section_9

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