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• The circulatory system is made up of the cardiovascular system and the lymphatic system.

– The cardiovascular system is made up of the blood, heart, and blood vessels.
– The lymphatic system is made up of the lymph, lymph nodes, and the lymph vessels.
• The heart is the central organ of the cardiovascular system.

• Some of the important parts of the heart are described below.

– The septum separates the heart vertically into two sides.
– The atrium is an upper chamber of the heart that receives blood that is returning to the heart.
A ventricle is a lower chamber of the heart that pumps blood out of the heart
• The valves are flaps of tissue that control the flow of the fluid.
• There are two types of valves: the atrioventricular valves and the semilunar valves.
– The atrioventricular valves prevent blood from flowing backward into the atria.
– The semilunar valves prevent blood from flowing back into the ventricles when the heart
• Circulation in the Heart
– Path of blood as it circulates through the heart:
– Deoxygenated blood enters the right atrium.
– The right atrium sends deoxygenated blood into the right ventricle.
• Circulation in the Heart, continued
– The muscles of the right ventricle contract and force blood into the pulmonary arteries.
– The pulmonary artery sends blood to the lungs. In the lungs, carbon dioxide diffuses out of
the blood, and oxygen diffuses into the blood.
• Circulation in the Heart, continued
– The muscular walls of the left ventricle contract and force blood into a large blood vessel.
• This blood vessel is called the aorta, and it carries blood from the left ventricle to the
rest of the body.
– The heart contracts its muscle cells in waves.
– The first group of heart-muscle cells that are stimulated lie in an area of the heart known as
the sinoatrial node.
• The sinoatrial (SA) node is a group of specialized heart-muscle cells that lies at the
junction of the superior vena cava and the right atrium and regulates the contraction
of the heart.
– The electrical impulse initiated by the SA node eventually reaches another special area of the
heart, known as the atrioventricular (AV) node.
• The atrioventricular (AV) node is a group of specialized heart-muscle cells that is
located between the right atrium and right ventricle and generates electrical impulses
that cause the ventricles of the heart to contract.
– A heartbeat has two phases.
• Phase one is called systole and occurs when the ventricles contract, closing the AV
valves and opening the SL valves to pump blood into the two major vessels that exit
the heart.
• Phase two is called diastole and occurs when the ventricles relax, allowing the back
pressure of the blood to close the SL valves and opening the AV valves.
• A series of pressure waves are caused by the contractions of the left ventricle when it
forces blood through the arteries. This is called a pulse.
• The circulatory system is known as a closed system because the blood is contained within either the
heart or the blood vessels at all times.
• The blood vessels that are part of the human circulatory system form a vast network to help keep the
blood flowing in one direction.
– The large, muscular vessels that carry blood away from the heart and to the body are called arteries.
– Arteries are made up of three layers: an inner endothelial layer, a middle layer of smooth muscle, and
an outer layer of connective tissue.
– As the heart moves the blood through the arteries, it produces a great force against the inside walls of
a blood vessel. This force is known as blood pressure.
– High blood pressure, or hypertension, can place a strain on the walls of the arteries and could cause
that artery to burst.
– In order to measure blood pressure, systolic pressure and diastolic pressure must be measured.
– Systolic pressure, measured first, is the pressure of the blood when the ventricles contract.
– Diastolic pressure, measured second, indicates the steady flow of blood through the artery.
– From the artery, a series of smaller vessels called arterioles carry the blood to capillaries.
– The capillaries are a vast network of tiny vessels that allow an exchange between the blood and the
cells to occur.
– After cells interact with the blood, the blood goes back to the heart. To do this, capillaries merge to
form venules.
– These venules are connected to a vein. A vein is a bundle of vascular tissue that transports fluids and
nutrients back to the heart.
– Veins are made up of three layers: endothelium, smooth muscle, and
connective tissue.

Patterns of Circulation
• The heart and blood vessels work together to form a continuous, closed system of circulation.
• This system contains two subsystems: the pulmonary circulation and the systemic circulation.
• Pulmonary circulation is the circulation of the blood as it travels between the heart and lungs.
• Pulmonary circulation brings the deoxygenated blood that comes into the heart to the lungs,
and returns oxygenated blood back to the heart for distribution to the body.
• Systemic Circulation
• Systemic circulation is the circulation of the blood between the heart and all other body
• Systemic circulation has several subsystems, including coronary circulation, hepatic portal
circulation, and renal circulation.
• Coronary circulation is the systemic circulation that supplies blood to the heart itself.
• If blood flow in the coronary arteries (arteries that supply blood to the heart) is
reduced or cut off, muscle cells will die.
• Hepatic portal circulation is the systemic circulation that supplies blood between the liver
and the small intestines.
• Renal circulation is the systemic circulation that supplies blood to the kidneys.
• The circulatory system also includes the lymphatic system.
• The lymphatic system returns fluids that have collected in the tissues to the bloodstream.
• Excess fluid in the tissues, called lymph, moves into the tiny vessels of the lymphatic system by
• Lymph vessels are similar to blood vessels but are also different in many ways.
• Lymph is filtered through small organs known as lymph nodes to trap tissue debris and other foreign
• Lymph nodes also store lymphocytes, white blood cells that are specialized to fight disease.
• Blood is composed of a liquid medium—plasma—and blood solids–red and white blood cells and
• Plasma
• Plasma is a sticky, straw-colored fluid that is about 90 percent water and includes
metabolites, nutrients, wastes, salts, and proteins.
• Plasma provides cells with nourishment and carries various proteins.
• Red Blood Cells
• A red blood cell is a disc-shaped cell that has no nucleus and transports oxygen to cells in all
parts of the body.
• Immature red blood cells synthesize large amounts of an iron-containing protein called
hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is the molecule that transports oxygen.
• White Blood Cells
• White blood cells are cells in the blood that destroy bacteria, viruses, and toxic proteins and
helps the body develop immunities.
• In addition to different functions, white blood cells also have a different structure and life
span than red blood cells.
• White Blood Cells, continued
• There are several types of white blood cells, including phagocytes and antibodies.
• Phagocytes are cells that engulf and digest foreign matter or microorganisms.
• Antibodies are proteins that react to a specific type of invader or inactivate or destroy
• Red blood cells have surface proteins that are used to classify a person’s blood. The type of surface
protein determines a person’s blood type.
• The surface proteins on a red blood cell or on an invading pathogen are called antigens.
• The most important human antigens are A, B, and Rh. They form two systems of blood typing: the A-
B-O system and the Rh system.
• A-B-O System
• The A-B-O system is a means of classifying blood by the antigens located on the surface of
the red blood cells and the antibodies circulating in the plasma.
• If blood of a different type is introduced into the body it will be treated as a foreign invader
and the antigen-antibody reaction will be produced, with some exceptions.
• Rh System
• The Rh system is based on the presence or absence of the Rh antigen.
• A person with Rh antigens is Rh positive; a person without Rh antigens is Rh negative.
• Similar complications to those of the ABO system can occur if blood containing the wrong Rh
antigens is transfused into a person.

• Hormones are substances secreted by cells

that act to regulate the activity of other cells in
the body.
– Hormones affect all cells in the body
and are made and secreted by
endocrine glands.
• Endocrine glands are ductless organs that
secret hormones either into the bloodstream or
the fluid around cells.

• The endocrine glands can be found through out

the body and are collectively known as the
endocrine system.
• Endocrine glands, such as the pancreas, can
also be exocrine glands.
– Exocrine glands secrete substances
through ducts to specific locations
inside and outside the body.
• Hormones can be grouped into two types based
on their structure. Hormones can either be
amino acid-based hormones or steroid hormones.
– Amino acid based-hormones are made of amino acids, either a single modified amino acid or
a protein made of 3-200 amino acids, and are water soluble.
– Steroid hormones are lipid hormones that the body makes from cholesterol and are fat
• Similar to steroid hormones are thyroid hormones.
• Regardless of which type of hormone is being activated, all hormones affect only their target cells.
– Target cells are specific cells to which a hormone travels to produce a specific effect.
– On the target cells are receptors. Receptors are proteins that bind to specific signal
molecules, such as hormones, that cause a cell to respond.
• Two organs, the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland, control the initial release of many hormones
for the endocrine system.
– The hypothalamus is the area of the brain that coordinates many activities of the nervous and
endocrine systems.
• The hypothalamus responds to information it receives from the body by issuing instructions, as
hormones, to the pituitary gland.
• The pituitary gland has two parts, anterior and posterior, and stores and releases hormones
produced by the hypothalamus.
• The nerve cells in the hypothalamus that secrete hormones are called neurosecretory cells.
– These cells secrete two types of hormones to the pituitary gland.
• Releasing hormones stimulate the anterior pituitary to make and secrete hormones.
Release-inhibiting hormones inhibit production and secretion of anterior-pituitary hormones

• The thyroid gland is located near the larynx and helps maintain a normal heart rate, blood pressure,
and body temperature by increasing or decreasing cellular metabolic rates.
• The thyroid gland is also important for development.
• Abnormal thyroid activity can result in hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.
• Overproduction of thyroid hormones is called hyperthyroidism and can have symptoms that vary
from overactivity to high body temperature.
• A deficiency in a thyroid hormone is known as hypothyroidism and can have symptoms that vary
from weight gain to retardation.
• Humans have an adrenal gland located above each kidney. Each adrenal gland has an inner core, the
medulla, and an outer core, also called the cortex.
• The medulla and the cortex function as separate endocrine glands.
• The medulla is controlled by the nervous system, and the cortex is controlled by the anterior
• The adrenal medulla secretes the hormones that stimulate a “flight-or-fight” response to a
• In this response, the hormones epinephrine, also called adrenaline, and norepinephrine are

• These hormones increases heart rate, blood pressure, blood glucose levels, and blood flow
into the heart and lungs so the body can respond to the initial stress.
• In the presence of some stresses the pituitary gland will secrete the adrenocorticotropic
hormone (ACTH).
• This hormone stimulates the adrenal cortex to produce the hormone cortisol.
• Cortisol promotes the production of glucose from proteins to help cells make usable
• Gonads are the gamete-producing organs that also produce a group of steroid sex hormones.
• Gonads, ovaries in females and the testes in males, are regulated by sex hormones, which
begin production at puberty.
• Puberty is the adolescent stage during which the sex organs mature and secondary sex
characteristics appear.
• The production of sex hormones is stimulated by the release of two hormones by the pituitary.
• The first hormone is luteinizing hormone (LH). This hormone stimulates ovulation and the
release of progesterone in females and the release of androgens, such as testosterone, in
• The second hormone is follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH). This hormone stimulates the
growth and maturation of the ovarian follicles in females and sperm production in males.
• The pancreas contains both exocrine and endocrine cells. The endocrine cells are called islets of
• These cells secrete hormones that regulate the level of sugar in the blood. The hormone insulin is
one of the hormones produced.
• Insulin lowers the blood sugar level by stimulating body cells to store glucose or use it
for energy.
• A condition called diabetes mellitus occurs when cells are unable to obtain glucose from the blood.
This results in a high glucose level in the blood
• There are two types of diabetes: Type I and Type II.
• Type I occurs when immune cells attack and destroy the islet of Langerhans cells.
• Type II occurs when cells don’t have sufficient insulin levels or when the organism’s cells
have become less responsive.
• A condition called hypoglycemia occurs when excessive insulin is stored and not properly delivered
to body cells.
• This leads to a lowered blood glucose concentration, which can cause such symptoms as
overactivity and dizziness.
• There are several other glands in the endocrine system, including thymus gland, the pineal gland and
the parathyroid glands.
• Thymus Gland
• The thymus gland is located beneath the sternum and plays a role in the development of the
immune system by secreting thymosin.
• This amino acid-based hormone stimulates formation of T cells.

• Pineal Gland
• The pineal gland is located near the base of the brain and helps regulate sleep patterns by
secreting melatonin.
• Parathyroid Gland
• The parathyroid glands is made up of four glands embedded in the two thyroid glands.
• These glands secrete the parathyroid hormone, which stimulates the transfer of
calcium ions from the bones to the blood.
• The endocrine system plays an important role in the maintenance of a stable internal environment, or
• Maintenance of homeostasis is controlled by feedback mechanisms. A feedback mechanism is one
in which the last step in a series of events controls the first.
• Feedback mechanisms can be either negative or positive.
• Positive Feedback
• Positive feedback occurs when the release of an initial hormone stimulates release or
production of other hormones or substances.
• An example of positive feedback is the stimulation and increase in luteinizing hormone by
• Antagonistic Hormones
• Antagonistic hormones work together in pairs to regulate the levels of critical substances.
• Example: Both glucagon and insulin regulate blood sugar levels.