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Second Semester 
Teaching style
Lingua Insegnamento

Informazioni aggiuntive

Course Curriculum CFU Length(h)
[60/76]  BIOTECHNOLOGY [76/20 - Ord. 2018]  Farmaceutico 6 48


The course aims to provide the fundamentals of Cellular and General Physiology to allow the student to acquire the theoretical and operational skills of the morpho-functional aspects of the mechanisms of homeostasis regulation and maintenance of the physiological processes of the cell and of the systems, in particular learning basic knowledge of life processes at the cellular level and understanding and learning of the integrative and coordinated functions of the main physiological systems.
In particular, he must be able to:
acquire the basic knowledge concerning the general organization and functionality of the main devices and the control mechanisms which the body acts in different contexts
acquire the ability to self-assess their knowledge and skills and be able to update their skills in the field of physiology to identify their training needs
being able to assess independently different opinions on problematic aspects of the physiology in particular of human physiology using the acquired knowledge and knowing how to expose their knowledge with language properties and learn the specific scientific language that allows to express and argue with disciplinary vocabulary knowledge demonstrating to have achieved a good learning ability in the organization of one's own thought around such information aimed at their application in biotechnology
develop critical and independent judgment skills in order to be able to make connections between different topics, evaluate the general correctness of an argument on a physiological function through the integration of the acquired knowledge learned in class or through independent study


Knowledge of inorganic and organic chemistry, physics, cell biology and comparative anatomy


Phisiology: The concept of homeostasis and homeostatic regulation. Cell exchange with the environment: definition of flow and driving force, diffusion and migration in electric field. Transmembrane transport. Free-form exchanges: diffusion in the phospholipid matrix. Migration through ion channels, voltage and chemio-dependent channels. Mediated transport: facilitated diffusion, primary active transport, secondary active transport. The transcellular and paracellular pathways. Vescicular transport.
Communication between Cells: chemical messengers, chemical receptors, G-proteins, the second messenger pathways.
Endocrine system: general characteristics. Hypothalamic-pituitary axis. Function of the main endocrine glands.
Nervous system:Cell excitability. membrane potential and its measurement, equilibrium potential, Donnan equilibrium. Genesis of membrane potential. Passive electrical properties of the membrane. Action potential: general properties, ionic genesis. Propagation of the action potential. General properties of the local potential. Impulse transmission: electrical and chemical synapses, neurotransmitters and synaptic potential. General characters of local potentials. General organization of the central nervous system (CNS), peripheral (SNP) and autonomic nervous system (SNA). Nerve fibers and their characteristics.
Sensory physiology: general properties, sensory receptors, receptor potential, transduction and coding of sensory signals. Special sensory system.
Physiology of the Muscles and Movement: molecular organization of skeletal muscle fibers, excitation-contraction coupling, molecular events of the muscle contraction mechanism, cross-bridge cycling, mechanics and metabolism. Shock simple and physiologic tetanus.
Physiology of the Cardio-Circulatory System: Heart muscle, the common myocardium function, contractility, refractoriness. Properties of the conduction myocardial, electrical and rhythmic activity of the heart, automation. Cardiac cycle, extrinsic and intrinsic cardiac output regulation. The circulatory system. Systemic circulation: arteries, capillaries and veins, flow and pressure in the various districts, exchange at capillary level. Mechanisms for controlling cardiac and circulatory functions. Blood: physiological characteristics.
Physiology of the Gastro-intestinal function: motility, secretion, digestion and absorption. Nervous and hormonal control. Fundamentals on the digestion of carbohydrates, lipids and proteins.
Physiology of the Respiratory function: mechanics of structures and physical parameters involved. Pulmonary ventilation. Gas exchange in lungs and tissues. Alveolar air. Transport of gases in the blood. Genesis of respiratory rhythm. Chemical and nervous regulation of respiration. Acid-base balance.
Physiology of the Renal Function: the nephron and its functions, glomerular filtration, reabsorption, tubular secretion, and excretion. Mechanisms of urine concentration. Hydro-saline and acid-base balances. Neuro-humoral control of renal functions. Endocrine functions of the kidney and blood pressure regulation.
Physiology of the digestive system: Anatomo-functional organization of the digestive system. Oral digestion. Gastric digestion and functions of the stomach. Intestinal digestion: composition, secretion and functions of pancreatic liquid. Intestinal absorption: nutrient absorption mechanisms, water, electrolytes, vitamins. Liver functions. Components and formation of bile.

Teaching Methods

Class lectures and interactive didactics with the use of PowerPoint presentations, that will be made available to students. Guided discussion on the topics discussed and recalls to physiological condition.
As established on p. 17 of the “Manifesto degli Studi” of the University of Cagliari, “Teaching will be delivered in presence. The lessons might be integrated with audiovisual tools and streaming”.
Each student, at the beginning of the semester, can opt for the attendance in presence or online. Depending on the availability of the classrooms and the number of students who will opt for the in-present mode, there may still be a shift for the actual access in the classroom.

Verification of learning

Ongoing optional trial on the topics discussed in the first half of the course with correction - discussion. Knowledge and skills acquired by the student will be verified through an oral examination or possibly, in the first call at the end of the course, a written exam, consisting of a questionnaire with multiple-choice and brief open questions, followed by an oral exam. The oral exam is a critical discussion of the written exam during which the student will have the opportunity to confirm or improve his / her vote. On subsequent dates the examination will be oral. It will be evaluated: acquired knowledge, knowledge of disciplinary language, ability to relate concepts and knowledge, exhibition skills.
Evaluation Criteria
The final mark takes into account several factors:
Quality of knowledge, skills possessed;
appropriateness, fairness and congruence of knowledge and skills.
Exposure mode:
a) Expressive ability;
b) Proper use of the specific language of the discipline;
c) Logical and consequential capacities in content linking;
d) Ability to connect different topics by finding common points and establishing a coherent overall design;
e) Ability to synthesize also through the use of the proper symbolism of the discipline.
Relational and personal qualities, critical spirit and self-assessment ability.
The judgment can be:
a) No sufficient
The candidate shows insufficient preparation in most of the topics addressed during the oral exam.
b) Sufficient (from 18 to 20/30)
The candidate demonstrates little acquisition of theoretical knowledge, superficial level, many gaps. Modest communicative abilities, but still sufficient to support a coherent dialogue; logical skills and consequentiality in fitting the subjects of elementary level.
c) Moderate (21 to 23)
The candidate demonstrates a moderate acquisition of knowledge, but poorly detailed, a few gaps; communicative abilities more than sufficient to support a coherent dialogue; acceptable mastery of the scientific language, logical capacity and consequentiality in fitting the subjects of moderate complexity, good enough capacity of synthesis and acceptable ability of graphical expression.
d) Good (from 24 to 26)
The candidate demonstrates a rather broad wealth of knowledge, moderate in depth, with small gaps; satisfying expressive abilities and meaningful scientific language; dialogic ability and critical thinking well detectable; good capacity of synthesis.
e) Very good (from 27 to 29)
The candidate demonstrates a very extensive wealth of notions, well in-depth, with marginal gaps; remarkable abilities in communicating and high mastery of scientific language; remarkable dialogical ability, good competence and relevant aptitude for logical synthesis; high synthesis capabilities.
f) Excellent (30)
The candidate demonstrates a wealth of very extensive and in-depth knowledge, irrelevant gaps, high capacity and high mastery in communicating through the scientific language; excellent dialogical ability and marked aptitude to make connections among different topics, excellent ability to synthesize.


C.L. Stanfield. Fisiologia - EdiSES
Dee U. Silverthorn. Fisiologia: un approccio integrato - Ambrosiana
Berne & Levy. Fisiologia - Ambrosiana
Carbone, F. Cicirata e G. Aicardi. FISIOLOGIA: dalle molecole ai sistemi integrati - Edises

More Information

Power Point presentations will be provided to the students.

Questionnaire and social

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