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Second Semester 
Teaching style
Lingua Insegnamento

Informazioni aggiuntive

Course Curriculum CFU Length(h)
[40/44]  PHYSIOTHERAPY [44/00 - Ord. 2017]  PERCORSO COMUNE 4 32


The Physiology course allows the student to acquire basic theoretical knowledge on human physiology, with particular reference to the nervous system, the sensory system, the skeletal, cardiac and smooth musculal systems, and the respiratory system. The course will also enable the development of professional communication skills, important not only for passing the exam but also for a proper interaction with healthcare staff and patients
CAPACITY TO APPLY KNOWLEDGE: The student must be able to apply the general knowledge of physiology needed to understand physiological processes; he/she must also demonstrate a appropriate skills to both argue and support arguments, and to solve problems.
MAKING JUDGEMENTS: The course aims to stimulate the objective evaluation of teaching by constantly proposing to students a comparison between the theoretical contents proposed during the frontal lessons and their acquisition through the independent study using the suggested texts and the didactic material provided.
COMMUNICATION SKILLS: Ability to describe in a basic, clear and complete way and with proper terminology the functional mechanisms of different human body systems.
LEARNING SKILLS: Acquiring the knowledge necessary to undertake subsequent courses with high degree of autonomy.


Basic knowledge of biochemistry, physics and anatomy.


Introduction to the Central Nervuous system: Anatomical and Functional Organization of the CNS. Lateralization. Associative Cortex. The neuron. Glial cells. Membrane and action potentials. Ionic channels. Electrical gradients of the ions involved in the determination of the membrane potential. Nerst's equation. Goldman's equation. Sodium-potassium pump. Sodium dependent voltage channels. Potassium dependent voltage channel. Phases of the action potential.
Synapses: Differences between electrical and chemical synapses. Release of neurotransmitters. Ionotropic and metabotropic receptors. Post-synaptic excitatory potential. Post-Synaptic Inhibitory potential. Spatial and temporal summation.
The neurotransmitters: Acetylcholine. Dopamine. Norepinephrine. Histamine. Serotonin. Glycine. GABA. Glutamate. Neutral peptides.
The second messengers: cAMP. Inositol triphosphate. Diacylglycerol. Arachidonic acid. Protein G and protein kinases.
Sensory receptors: Classification of receptors. The somatosensitive system: the tactile receptors. Adaptation of the receptors. Spatial discriminatory capacity. Termoceptores.
Pain: Pain classification. Fibers and receptors. Hyperalgesia. Types of pain. Gate control theory. Central pain modulation: the role of encephalin. Antero-lateral system.
Auditory and vestibular function: The sound. Anatomical organization. Transduction mechanism. Tonotopic organization. Afferent and efferent innervation. Origin of sounds. Semicircular channels. The Utriculus and the sacculus. Vestibular reflections.
Motor systems: motor descending systems. Spinal cord. Motor cortex. Cerebellum. Basal ganglia. Parkinson's disease.
Reflexes: circuites and type of reflexes.

Muscle system: Skeletal musculature, structural organization: sarcomero. Coupling excitation-contraction. Contractile mechanism. Electrical properties. Mechanical properties: isometric and isotonic contractions. Voltage development and shortening speed. Voltage / Length Relationship. Force / frequency ratio. Muscle tetanus. Force / Speed ratio. Types of fibers and muscle metabolism. Muscle Contractions and Body Movements. Smooth muscle notes.
Cardio-circulatory function: The heart: the common and conduction myocardium functions, cardiac cycle, cardiac output and its regulation. The circulatory system: the systemic circulation and pulmonary circulation. Blood circulation in the various circulatory districts and its regulation.
Respiratory system: General respiratory tree structure and functions. Respiratory Mechanism - Respiratory Gases Spread - Pulmonary Circulation and Gaseous Exchanges. Respiratory regulation

Teaching Methods

The course consist of frontal lessons.
Methods and techniques of didactic interaction in the presence of the teacher.
Combination of frontal and interactive teaching with the use of computer tools and various classroom supports (video projections and blackboard).
Teacher-student interaction: by appointment via email.
For specific educational needs related to the epidemiological situation covid -19 , it is possible to provide lessons in live streaming or the above mentioned recorded online.

Verification of learning

The teaching is divided into two coordinated modules; the oral examination will be evaluated collegially by the professors; The student's profit assessment can not, however, be fractionated in the individual modules.
The judgment, expressed in thirtieths, can be:
a) Sufficient (from 18 to 20/30)
The candidate demonstrates little knowledge acquired, superficial level, many gaps. Modest expression ability, but still sufficient to sustain a coherent conversation; logic skills and consequentiality in the linking of the elementary level topics; poor ability to synthesize and graphic expression skills rather stunted; poor interaction with the teacher during the interview.
b) Moderate (from 21 to 23/30)
The candidate demonstrates decent acquisition of knowledge but little depth, a few gaps; expressive abilities more than sufficient to sustain a coherent conversation; acceptable mastery of scientific language; logic skills and consequentiality in the linking of moderately complex topics; more than enough capacity for synthesis and expression of acceptable graphics capabilities.
c) Good (from 24 to 26/30)
The candidate demonstrates a wealth of notions rather broad, moderate depth, with small gaps; satisfactory expressive capabilities and significant mastery of scientific language; dialogic skills and critical spirit well detectable; good ability to synthesize and graphical expression capabilities more than acceptable.
d) Very good (from 27 to 29/30)
The candidate demonstrates a wealth of very extensive, in-depth knowledge, with marginal gaps; remarkable expressive capabilities and high mastery of scientific language; remarkable dialogic ability, good skills and relevant aptitude for logic synthesis; high ability for synthesis and graphic expression.
e) Excellent (30/30)
The candidate demonstrates a wealth of very extensive, in-depth knowledge, with possible irrelevant gaps; expressive high capacity and high mastery of scientific language; excellent dialogic ability, ability to make connections between different subjects; excellent ability to synthesize and very familiar with graphic expression.
Praise is attributed to candidates clearly above average, and whose possible limits of knowledge, expression, understanding and logics are entirely irrelevant as a whole.
Based on the contextual conditions linked to the Covid-19 pandemic, shifts and / or online replacement activities may be envisaged for the exams.


FISIOLOGIA – D.U. Silverthorn – V edizione –Pearson.
FISIOLOGIA – Vander – Casa Editrice Ambrosiana.
FISIOLOGIA dalle Molecole ai Sistemi Integrati. E. Carbone, F. Cicirata, G. Aicardi. Edises.
FISIOLOGIA UMANA Dalle Cellule ai Sistemi – L. Sherwood – Zanichelli.

More Information

Power point presentations are provided to the students

Questionnaire and social

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