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Nervous System

Nervous system consists of brain, spinal cord and nerve cells


(neurons). Brain and spinal cord forms Central nervous system and all
the nerves form the Peripheral nervous system.

Neurons: A neuron consists of dendrites, cell body and an axon.

These are the nerve cells that help in

• Carrying information from sense organs to brain or spinal cord.


• carrying responses from brain or spinal cord to the effector
organs.

Synapse: Transmission of nerve impulse is the conduction of the


nerve impulse from one neuron to another, through synapses.
Synapses are the neural junctions formed by axon terminal of pre-
synaptic neuron and the dendrites or cell body of the post-synaptic
neuron.

Human Brain: It is protected by skull. It consists of three main parts:

• Forebrain – Receives sensory impulses from various receptors,


stores information and controls the movement of voluntary
muscles.
• Midbrain – Controls involuntary actions.
• Hindbrain – Consists of Medulla and Cerebellum.

Medulla controls various involuntary actions like blood pressure,


salivation etc.
Cerebellum helps in maintenance of posture and body balance.
Nerve impulse: The signal carried by nerve cell is called impulse.

• Nerves receive signals from sense organs through dendrites.


• These are then transferred to the cell body.
• From here they travel as an electrical signals along the length of
axon and finally reach nerve endings.
• Here these are converted to chemical signals and generate
electrical signals in the next nerve cell.

Reflex action: They are spontaneous and immediate responses to the


environmental changes.
For example: Blinking of eyes when light is flashed on them and
moving away of hand when a pin is pricked.
Path taken by a reflex action is called a reflex arc.
Action: Sensory nerves carry nerve impulses from sense organs to
Central nervous system. These are analysed and then responses are
carried by motor nerves to the effector organs, which are either
muscles or glands. Muscles contain special proteins, which on receiving
nerve impulses change their shape and arrangement. Due to this, the
muscles contract and show movement.

Endocrine System
The system consists of glands that secrete chemicals called
hormones.

Name of the gland Hormone secreted Function


Adrenal Adrenaline Fighting stressful and fearful situations.
Pituitary Growth hormone Regulation of growth and development of the
body.
Thyroid Thyroxin Metabolism of carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
Pancreas Insulin Metabolism of sugar.
Testis Testosterone Causes changes at the time of puberty in males.
Ovary Oestrogen Causes changes at the time of puberty in
females.

Deficiency of hormones causes many problems.

 Deficiency of growth hormone causes dwarfism.


 Deficiency of thyroxin causes goitre, whose
symptoms include swollen neck.
 Deficiency of insulin causes diabetes, whose
symptoms include increase in blood sugar level.

Growth Independent

Immediate responses in plants are growth independent and also


independent of the direction of stimulus. For example: Movement
in Mimosa pudica.
As the leaves of the plant are touched, the electrochemical signal
is transferred to the cells but not through any specialized tissue
like nervous tissue in animals. As the cells receive this signal,
there is change in the water content of the cells and the cells
shrink resulting in closure of the leaves.

Growth Dependent
These are slow responses in plants.

For example:

• Encircling of a tendril around an object.


• Tropic movements: These are the directional movements
dependent on stimulus direction like phototropism,
geotropism, chemotropism etc.

Chemicals called plant hormones control growth dependent slow


movements. They are synthesised at places away from where
they act.
For example: auxins, cytokinins, gibberellins, abscisic acid etc.

A tendril encircles the object because its part in contact with the
object grows less rapidly than the part away from the object.
Tropic movements are caused due to growth in particular
direction of the signal (stimulus).

Movement Stimulus Example


Phototropism Light Bending of shoot towards light.
Geotropism Earth’s gravity Bending of roots towards ground.
Chemotropism Chemicals Growth of pollen tube towards ovule.
Hydrotropism Water Movement of roots towards ground water.
Plant hormones and their functions are given as under:
Plant hormone Function
Auxins (synthesized at the Stimulate the growth of the cells.
shoot tip)
Gibberellins Help in growth of the stem.
Cytokinins Promotes cell division.
Abscisic acid Inhibits plant growth.