Topics in BiologyEcological pyramid explained with its importance and limitations Hindbrain: Medulla Oblongata and its features Food web explained with examples Biology Scheme of Work, SS1, First Term Biology Scheme of Work, SS1, 2nd Term Biology Scheme of Work, SS1, 3rd Term Seminal Vesicles and Bulbourethral Glands as Male Accessory Sex Organs Male Reproductive System: Scrotum and its contents Brain: Introduction to the Human Brain Forebrain: Lobes of the Cerebrum and their Functions Cerebellum: Parts and Functions of the Cerebellum Midbrain: Division and Functions of the Midbrain Negative Feedback Mechanism in Homeostasis Arterial Disorders: Characteristics and Causes of Arterial Disorders Types of Desert and their Characteristics Characteristics of Tropical Rainforest Swamp Forest: What are Swamp Forests? Characteristics of Swamp Forests Savanna: Savanna and Grassland explained Savanna - Types of Savanna
Academic Questions in Biology
In a food chain, the primary consumers are classified under trophic level _____.
Cold blooded animals are referred to as _____.
F. None of the above
All reptiles are vertebrates.
_____ cells are responsible for the formation of osteoblasts.
_____ is a bone that constitute the axial skeleton.
Which of the following is false concerning cartilages and bones?
A diagram showing the movement of energy through a food chain is called a _____.
Which of the following is NOT a part of the wrist bones (or carpal bones)?
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The hindbrain, also referred to as rhombencephalon is one of the parts or divisions of the brain; the others being the forebrain and midbrain respectively.
The immediate processes of survival (for instance, respiration, blood circulation and digestive functions) are coordinated by the hindbrain, specifically the medulla oblongata; a part of the hindbrain.
Note: Other involuntary (or autonomic) processes ongoing in our body are also controlled by the medulla oblongata. Some of these include swallowing, digestion, vasodilation, vomiting, coughing and sneezing.
The medulla oblongata (simply called the medulla) is seen at the lowermost portion of the brain (or brainstem) where it continues as the spinal cord inferiorly. For this reason, it becomes the primary point of connection between the Central Nervous System (CNS) and Peripheral Nervous System (PNS).
Below is an image showing the Medulla Oblongata:
The medulla merges with the spinal cord at the foramen magnum. The foramen magnum is an opening located at the base of the skull, marking the beginning of the spinal cord. It is shown below:
Superiorly, the medulla oblongata is connected to the midbrain via the pons. To this end, it plays a critical role in the transmission of nervous signals through the cerebrum (superiorly) and the spinal cord (inferiorly).
The medulla comprises of both myelinated white matter and unmyelinated gray matter intermingled together, thus giving rise to a network of interconnected neuronal clusters within the brainstem.
The following anatomical features are keys to help us identity the medulla oblongata:
Olive (Olivary body): The olivary body is a pair of oval structures present on the surface of the medulla oblongata. It contains numerous nerve fibers that connect the medulla to the pons and cerebellum respectively.
Median fissures (Midline Fissures): The median fissures are shallow grooves found on the anterior and posterior parts of the medulla. The posterior median fissure is referred to as the posterior median sulcus and it commences from the end of the fourth ventricle, continuing down into the sulcus of the spinal cord. The fissure (shallow grove) present on the anterior side is simply referred to as the median fissure. It is continuous with the median sulcus of the spinal cord.
Pyramids: These are two round masses of nerve fibers located on either side of the median fissure. They connect the medulla to the cerebrum, pons and spinal cord respectively. The pyramid are comprised of about one million nerves which crosses themselves in a process termed decussation of the pyramids.
The medulla oblongata is divided into 2 main portions. These are:
The frontal portion (called the ventral medulla) which contains a pair of structures called pyramids (as explained above).
The backward portion is termed the dorsal medulla). It is this dorsal medulla that forms the dorsal region of the fourth ventricle.
Note: In anatomical terms, ventral means (in front or anterior) and dorsal means (rear or back or posterior).
Think of the fourth ventricle as a fluid filled space surrounded by white matter on the outside and gray matter on the inside.
The image below shows the fourth ventricle:
Recall that we have 12 cranial nerves exiting from the brain (and they connect to different parts of the body). It is noteworthy that the dorsal medulla gives origin to the last 7 seven cranial nerves. Below is a list of all the cranial nerves:
The medulla oblongata is vital for human survival. Injuries related to it may lead to the following:
Partial paralysis of the opposite side of the body
Partial paralysis to the tongue
Inability to feel the stimulus of touch, temperature and pain
Difficulty in vomiting and swallowing
Difficulty in coughing and sneezing
Note: The cerebellum is another part of the hindbrain. It plays a major role in the body's voluntary movement (especially posture). It accounts for about 10% of the brain size and comprises of two cerebellar hemispheres separated by a structure called the vermis.
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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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Amazing facts in Biology
99% of a panda's diet is bamboo. They may eat fish or other small animals occasionally
When attacked by insects, lima beans plant will often command parasitic wasps to their defence.
When the leaves of the lima bean's leaves are eaten by insects, the plant gives off a substance that signals parasitic wasps to swam in, destroying its enemies (the leaf-eating insects) in the process
Frogs drink water through their skin
Armadillos are western mammals known for their unique armor-like shell which are bulletproof
Although zebras are known for their characteristics black and white stripes, we still have some polka-dotted zebras
Charles Darwin is a British naturalist and biologist who contributed greatly into the study of evolution. According to research, he frequently ate the animals he studied
Lungs are the only human organ that can float on water
Unlike most snakes that lay eggs, anacondas give birth to live babies
A shrimp's heart is in its head
Women have more pain receptors than men
NOTABLE POINTS IN Biology
For a thing to be considered living, it must possess all the basic characteristics of life. These include:
Irritability or Sensitivity
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:
The term Biology originated from two Greek words. They are:
Bios: means life.
Logos: means knowledge or to study.
Biology can therefore be defined as 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:
Irritability or Sensitivity
The above listed points are often regarded as the basic characteristics of life. You can memorize them using the acronym -> MR. NIGER DAC.
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.
It is noteworthy to state that plants are the only orgnisms that take away CO2 from the atmosphere