Evolutionary Physiology

Dhristi NEET 2022-24

Introduction to Physiology

Physiology, in other words, is the science of life. It is one of the areas of biology aiming to study the functioning of living organisms, animals, and plants. It helps to understand the function of cells at the ionic and molecular level with the integrated behavior of the living organism, including the human body. By learning the principles of anatomy and physiology, it helps the physiologist on how the body works and responds during challenges of everyday life. The major emphasis is given on studying integrating molecular, cellular, and whole-body functions


What Physiologists Do?

Physiologists usually work in university and research institutes, continuously learning the working of cells in living organisms. Physiology is an exciting stream to learn and work on that underpins clinical medicine. In other words, it helps to provide an interface between the physical sciences and life science.


Throughout the study, physiologists keep learning different aspects of the human and animal body working. Moreover, some physiologists even work or investigate the behaviors of individual proteins in single cells. Others investigate the integration of tissue cells and organs.


It is vital to know that physiologists don't only work in research institutes, but also work with patients as a part of disease management. They also work with athletes to help them improve their overall performance in the game. The best part of their job is they get to travel across different countries for learning and research purposes.


Human Physiology

Physiologists work on human physiology to study the nature of the human body or structure. It helps in studying how the human body works. Muscle contraction, cells, tissues, and other areas of the human body are studied.


Plant Physiology

Plant physiology is the study of plant tissues and their growth. It is the foremost line of defense and medium of interaction in different environmental conditions. In other words, it is the study of plant behavior and functioning encompassing dynamic processes of growth and metabolism. In plants, most of the active process takes place at the level of cells, tissues, and other parts of the plant. Plant physiology and biochemistry is the most interesting area to learn for a physiologist. They give complete insight into the growth and death of plants.

Animal Physiology

Animal physiology involves the study of how the animal body works and investigating biological processes of the same. The study involves understanding various levels of organic cells, organ systems, and the whole anatomy of the animal. Under this study, the physiologists examine the biological processes functioning under different environmental stages. The entire process is closely linked with the anatomy and the basic physical and chemical laws. When animal physiology is linked with biology, the study covers a broader area. It includes the scientific disciplines of cell biology, developmental biology, and immunology.


Medical Physiology

Medical physiology covers the studying of various body systems of the body from the molecular level. This study majorly implies humans and other living things. In other words, it helps to understand the cellular metabolism in living organisms. It helps to understand the state of health and wellness of a human during different opportunities. It practices human and living organism health.


Clinical Physiology

Under clinical physiology, the physiologist diagnoses the patient by undergoing specialized tests of heart and blood vessels. The clinical physiologist would conduct a test to measure the movement of the metabolic process by using different tools including magnetic resonance imagining, x-ray, and nuclear medicine scanners.


Branches of Physiology

There are different branches of physiology that help to understand different areas of humans. Below are some-

  • Cell Physiology: It involves the study of cell work and interaction. It concentrates on membrane transport and neuron transmission.

  • System Physiology: This area focuses on computational and mathematical modeling of complex biological systems. It helps to describe how individual cells or components of the system respond.

  • Evolutionary Physiology: Studying the way systems or body parts work. Evolutionary physiology implies over multiple generations.

  • In the human physiological study, there are different systems covered:

  • Circulatory System: This includes the study of blood vessels, and how blood circulation works in the human body.

  • Digestive and Excretory System: Charting the movement of solids into liquid in our body. It involves the study of different internal organs of the body including the liver, spleen, and pancreas.

  • Endocrine System: This involves the study of endocrine hormones carrying signals throughout the organisms. Moreover, the expert studies the pituitary, thyroid, adrenals, pancreas, and gonads.

  • Immune System: The body’s natural defense system comprises white blood cells and lymph systems. Moreover, molecules like antibodies and cytokines feature heavily.

  • Nervous System: The study involves the central nervous system, which comprises the brain and spinal cord. Nervous system study includes research of senses, memory, and emotions.


What is Physiology? 

Physiology is a branch of biology which deals with the study that shows how the body of human beings function day to day. It explains the science behind how molecules behave in order for the organs to function. Most study of physiology is the research which is based on the functioning of a human body. 

Branches of Physiology 

Physiology is further divided into branches depending on the field of different expertise:

  • Human and Animal Physiology: Human and Animal physiology is the study of how the organs in the body are functioning, to understand the biochemical of human beings for their good health. 

  • Plant Physiology: Plant Physiology is a branch of study under botany which deals with the functioning of plant cells, structure and the functioning. It helps to analyze the process of photosynthesis, respiration, transpiration, plant development etc. 

  • Environmental Physiology/ Ecophysiology: Environmental Physiology is related with study of the surroundings of the plants and their response to the environment such as temperature, wind, heat etc. 

  • Comparative Physiology: Comparative physiology studies the diversity between the nature of organisms and their adaptability in extreme conditions. It is somewhat similar to evolutionary physiology and environmental physiology. 

  • Evolutionary physiology: It deals with the study of evolution in organisms and how well they have responded to it over time. It includes life history, anatomy, biochemistry, molecular evolution etc. 

  • Exercise Physiology: This field deals with the impact of sports and exercises on the human body. It is the study of body movement, muscular strain, respiratory functioning, heart rate etc during a physical activity.

Different Types of Physiologists 

In different field of specialization and expertise, we have different physiologists such as 

  1. Clinical Physiologist 

  2. Animal Physiologist 

  3. Plant Physiologist 

  4. Exercise Physiologist 

  5. Viral Physiologist 

What Does a Physiologist Do? 

All over the world, physiologists are operating in universities, in studies institutions, research laboratories, in biotechnology corporations and withinside the pharmaceutical enterprise to study and strengthen the understanding about a living body. 

Physiologists examine how human and animal bodies work by working on a single cell, or cells on how they interact with each other or different tissues in our body required for functioning. These studies will help in clinical research, veterinary research or even medical fields in understanding of organisms

Not all physiologists are observed in studies laboratories, though. Physiologists additionally work with patients in medical institution clinics, assisting with the prognosis and control of disease. Exercise physiologists work along with elite athletes, assisting to enhance their overall performance and keep away from injury, or they inspect how the frame adapts to intense environmental challenges, along with deep sea diving or extended area flight. Field of Physiology is vast. Physiologists can tour the sector to meetings and conferences to give their findings to different scientists.  Some physiologists file medical trends for newspapers, journals and different media, or play an advisory position to Government or charitable organizations. Physiologists additionally use their abilities withinside the criminal arena, carrying out complicated problems of patent law, or in education, inspiring and nurturing the following generation. Studying body structure opens doorways to employment in a majority of these regions and more.

Book your Free Demo session
Get a flavour of LIVE classes here at Vedantu
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. What are the Different Types of Physiology?

There are different types or branches of physiology physiologists can study. Some of the physiology types are-

  • Cell Physiology: It involves the study of cells to know how they carry themselves in the body and interact with each other. For humans, these cells are very important to work perfectly.

  • System Physiology: Also called system biology, the study involves mathematical learning of biological systems and focuses on components like metabolism. Physiologists use computational models for better understanding biological processes.

  • Exercise Physiology: The study involves processes occurring in the body during physical workouts. It helps to know how our body reacts to long-term workouts.

2. What are the Benefits of Exercise Physiology?

Exercise physiology is a type of medical science using exercise to treat people for health conditions. It is proven that regular workouts can help our body to stay active and mind calm. Exercise physiologists conduct analyses of patients who perform regular workouts and how it is helping them to improve their mental and physical health. EP does the regular check-up on how body parts are responding to performing regular workouts. Although they are not personal trainers, they help in teaching you specific skills needed for the improvement of the body. It is important to undergo EP once to understand how our body works and how we can improve. 

3.  How will you differentiate between Physiology and Plant Physiology?

Physiology is the department of biology that deals with the everyday capabilities of all dwelling organisms and their parts. Plant Physiology Plant body structure is a sub-field of botany involved with the functioning, or body structure, of plants.

4. What is physiology about? 

Physiology is the study of how the body of Human beings function day to day. It explains the science behind how molecules behave in order for the organs to function. Most study of physiology is research based on the functioning of a human body. 

5. What are the different fields of physiology? 

Few of the different fields include-  Microscopic physiology, human and animal physiology, development physiology, comparative physiology and practical physiology, plant physiology. 

6. What are the few careers under physiology? 

There are variety of career options under physiology such as 

  • Neurophysiologist 

  • Exercise Physiologist

  • Cardiac Physiologist 

  • Clinical physiologist

  • Physiological Psychologist

7. How can you differentiate between biology and physiology?

Biology is a branch of science that deals overall with all living matter whereas, physiology is a branch of biology that deals with the cells or the functioning of the organs, both physical and chemical reactions in the living body.