Skeleton: Functions of the Human Skeleton

len Alfred Ajibola - Sat, 21st December, 2019 @ 22:26

Topics in Biology

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Academic Questions in Biology

Please check out our Test Your Knowledge page to see all Questions and Answers

The final organisms in a food chain are best referred to as _____.

  • A. saprophytes

  • B. parasites

  • C. commensals

  • D. decomposers

  • E. tertiary consumers

  • F. quatenary consumers

Which of the following is a category of long bones?

  • A. Stunted long bones
  • B. Reduced long bones
  • C. Giant long bones
  • D. Bended long bones
  • E. Curved long bones
  • F. Elongated long bones

The end product of photosynthesis is _____.

  • A. O2
  • B. C​​​​​​2​​​​C5OH
  • C. H2​​​​​O
  • D. CO2
  • E. C6H12O6
  • F. C2H5COOH

The above diagram illustrates a _____.

  • A. Food Chain
  • B. Food Web
  • C. Food Pyramid
  • D. Food Link
  • E. Food Hub
  • F. Food zone

The living cells that makes up cartilages are called _____.

  • A. osteocytes
  • B. osteoblasts
  • C. osteoclasts
  • D. chondroblasts
  • E. chrondocytes
  • F. Osteoprogenitor cells

Which of the following statement is incorrect with regards to chitin?

  • A. Ecdysis is a term associated with chitin
  • B. It is a skeletal material
  • C. It is a type of skeleton
  • D. It is present outside the organism
  • E. It does not grow when the organism grows
  • It is present in ants

Which of the following is NOT a function of the human skeleton?

  • A. Gives Shape
  • B. Provides Protection
  • C. Aids in Locomotion
  • D. Supports Movement
  • E. Assists in Inhalation and Exahalation
  • F. None of the above
  • G. All of the above

Organisms that manufacture their own food through the help of sunlight or chemicals are best referred to as _____.

  • A. autotrophs
  • B. chemosynthetic
  • C. photosynthentic
  • D. chemoautotrophs
  • E. photoautotrophs
  • F. chemoautotrophs

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What is Skeleton?

Humans and animals need skeleton for their shape and support. For instance, if humans had no skeleton, they will be imagined to be like a lump of skin on the floor, without any form, shape and support.

In plants, rather than having a skeleton, they possess xylem which has in its composition some dead and hardened tissues (commonly called wood). These attribute to a plant's uprightness and support.

In animals, the skeleton is defined as a bony framework of the body that provides support, shape and protection.

Unicellular organisms do also have a form of skeleton.

Please read on Bone and Bone Cells here.

The skeleton serves various functions in animals. For instance:

The skeleton provides support to humans in the sense that our bodily muscles are attached to various bones in our body via the tendons.

As an instance, the bone of the ribs serves as an attachment to the intercostal muscles. The intercostal muscles are quite important during the process of breathing.

Similarly, the arm muscles are attached to the scapula bone; are these are necessary for some of the movements of the upper limb.

Please read on the 206 Bones of the Human Skeleton here.

Animals have got different shapes and this is a function of the skeleton. The ability to stand in an upright position is one of the characteristics of primates; and the nature of their skeleton is responsible for their uprightness.

Please read on Primates and their Characteristics here.

Skeleton offers protection to the delicate internal organs. Examples of these organs are the heart and lungs which are protected by the rib cage or thoracic cage. Also, the brain is protected inside the skull and this is one reason why footballers can perform heading skills in the game of football without damaging their brain.

Below is an image of the Human Skeleton:
Human Skeleton - Len Academy

Please read on Skeleton and Skeletal Materials here.

Functions of the Skeleton

In Humans, the Skeleton generally performs six main functions. These are:

1. Protection: The skeleton protects the delicate internal organs; for instance, the brain is protected by some bones of the skull while the heart and lungs are protected by the sternum (breast bone) and ribs, giving rise to the rib cage or thoracic cage.

2. Movement: The skeleton brings about movement in conjunction with the cartilages, muscles, tendons and nervous system.
Please read on Cartilages and their Functions here.

Note: Ligaments attaches bone to bone while Tendons attaches muscles to bone.

3. Support and Shape:: Without the skeleton, we won't be upright. The shape of all animals are dependent on the structure of their skeleton. Also, the bones that make up the face supports it, giving the face it's structure.
Please read on Chitin (Skeletal Materials of Insects) here.

4. Production of Blood Cells: The Red Blood Cells, White Blood Cells and Platelets are produced in the bone marrow of spongy bones.
Please read on Classification of Bones based on Structure (Compact and Spongy Bone) here.

Please read on Red Blood Cells and Hemoglobin here.

5. Hormonal functions: The bone is an endocrine organ.

Endocrine glands (or organs) produces hormones.

The hormone osteocalcin (produced by the bone cells) regulates insulin production and sensitivity in the body. The hormone also aid in the deposition of fats around the body.

Note: It is believed by medical scientist that osteocalcin has a part to play in the prevention of type 2 diabetes and obesity.
Please read on Homeostasis and Negative Feedback Mechanism here.

6. Storage of Minerals: About 99% of the total bodily calcium are present and stored in bones. The bone also accounts for about 85% of the body's phosphorus.

Please read on the various Minerals, their Sources, Functions and Deficiencies here.

The bone acts as a repository of calcium. This function is vital in the regulation of blood calcium. This process can be critical to the survival of humans.

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Alfred Ajibola is a Medical Biochemist, a passionate Academician with over 7 years of experience, a Versatile Writer, a Web Developer, a Cisco Certified Network Associate and a Cisco CyberOps Associate.

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For a thing to be considered Living, it must possess all the Basic Characteristics of Life. These include:

  1. Movement

  2. Respiration

  3. Nutrition

  4. Irritability or Sensitivity

  5. Growth

  6. Excretion

  7. Reproduction

  8. Death

  9. Adaptation

  10. Competition

Please read the explanations on all the Basic Characteristics of Life here

During strenuous exercises like sprinting or 🏃 running, your body may actually work in the shortage of oxygen. During this time, your body owes oxygen (called oxygen debt) and it must be replenished or repayed after the exercise is stopped. This is why you breathe excess of oxygen after you stopped the exercise.

This is the concept of anaerobic respiration

A food Chain is a diagram that shows the relationship between plants and animals within a habitat on the basis of how they rely on each other for food.

Note: Habitat is a place where an organism live. It is of three types:

  • Terrestrial (Land)
  • Aquatic (Water)
  • Arboreal (🌲 Treetops)

You can read on Food Chain here

The term Biology originated from two Greek words. They are:

  • Bios: means life. 
  • Logos: means knowledge or to study.

Biology can therefore be defined is the study of life

Anything that has life is generally considered as a living organism (or organism) 🌱🐐🐓. All living organisms must be able to carry the following activities:

  1. Movement
  2. Respiration
  3. Nutrition
  4. Irritability or Sensitivity
  5. Growth
  6. Excretion
  7. Reproduction
  8. Death
  9. Adaptation
  10. Competition

The above listed points are often regarded as the basic characteristics of life. You can memorize them using the acronym (MR. NIGER DAC).

You can read on the introduction to Biology and the basic characteristics of life here

The gas used in the manufacture of food by plants is Carbon dioxide or Carbon(IV)oxide or CO2. 

Plants manufacture food through a process called photosynthesis. Please read on photosynthesis here

Note: Plants are the only orgnisms that take away CO2 from the atmosphere