5.2 Pseudo-ruminants

Animals in the third suborder of the Artiodactlya, the pigs, peccaries and (according to most authorities) the hippopotamuses (suborder Suina), use a slight variant on the ruminant method, and are often referred to as pseudo-ruminants. You might like to add this information to your version of Table 2. These animals do have st
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4.2 Digesting cellulose

Figure 3 in this section contains a lot of information and many terms that are probably new to you. Set aside the detail for the moment, read
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2 The herbivore lifestyle – living on leaves

Leaves are a much less nutritious food than most kinds of animal material, so large herbivores have to eat large quantities of plants and they have special ways to digest their food. As author David Attenborough (DA) says, ‘Leaves are extremely poor food’ [p. 89]. To find out why living on a diet of leaves is particularly difficult, we need to know something about how leaves work.


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5.2 Differences between the sexes

In biology, ‘sex’ refers to a particular form of reproduction, sexual reproduction, that is distinct from asexual reproduction. As you know, sexual reproduction involves the production of eggs by females and sperm by males; eggs (or ova) and sperm are known as gametes. It is a universal feature of mammalian biology that in sexual reproduction there are two types of gametes and that progeny are produced by the fusion of two unlike gametes to form a single cell called the zygote. The zygote
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3.1 Water distribution and usage issues

People in many parts of the world currently face a chronic shortage of water. This is a developing crisis that is expected to get worse. As you read in Section 1, several factors underlie this dire prediction. In addition, climate change is expected to cause major changes in the distribution of freshwater. The uneven distribution of freshwate
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3.8.1 Standard deviation: finding how reproducible a series of measurements are

Even if we know the maximum and minimum and middle values in a group of numbers, we still don't have a clear idea about the distribution of values within that range: are most of the values all bunched up at one end or spread evenly across the results?

For instance, if I count my pulse rate on the hour every hour, nine times over the course of a day, I might get the following values for the number of beats per minute (bpm): 61, 59, 60, 62, 60, 100, 59, 63, 61. The average result is 65 bp
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3.6.3 Exponential decrease: radioactive decay

The most familiar example of exponential decrease is provided by radioactive decay. Radioactivity is a natural phenomenon that is used routinely in many medical applications, from imaging (radioactive tracers in PET scanning) to therapy (radiotherapy to destroy tumours). During radioactive decay, the number of radioactive atoms halves at a constant rate, called the half-life. For instance, the radioactive isotope 11C, pronounced ‘carbon 11’, has a half-life of 1224 seconds (a l
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3.6.1 Radioactivity and bugs!

Many natural processes involve repeated doublings or halving at regular intervals. You may have come across this already in your work, in the context of bacterial growth or radioactivity. In this section, we are going to look in more detail at bacterial growth and radioactivity and we will be using graphs to examine how the numbers of bacteria or numbers of radioactive atoms change over time.


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Questions relating to Figure 11

The following OD450 values were measured from serum samples taken from three babies: 0.12, 0.40, and 1.74.

Self-assessment Question 3

3.9 Moon41: Apollo 15 station 2

The panorama was collected by James B. Irwin at Station 2. David Scott is to the left of the rover. He is examining a boulder. The large hill to the left of the rover is the summit of Mt. Hadley Delta. (QuickTime, 400KB, note: this may take some time to download depending on your connection speed)

8 Multiple plate collisions and the end of the Iapetus Ocean

The document attached below includes the eighth section of Mountain building in Scotland. In this section, you will find the following subsections:

  • 8.1 Introduction

  • 8.2 Palaeocontinental reconstructions

    • 8.2.1 The global view

    • 8.2.2 A model for the closure of the Iapetus Ocean

    • 8.2.3 Summary of Section 8.2

  • 8.3 Tectonics of the Northe
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12.6 Distance cues

There are two main cues available that allow us to judge the distance to a sound source. The first of these is the sound pressure level. Sound pressure level drops by 6 dB each time the distance that a sound travels doubles. In other words, if the sound pressure level of a sound is 60 dB SPL when its source is 1 m from you, then it will be 54 dB SPL if you move back another metre so that you are now 2 m away from its source. Therefore lower sound pressure levels indicate a greater distance. A
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11.5 Summary of sections 8 to 11

In these sections we have described some of the quantitative relationships between the physical dimensions of simple sounds and their subjective psychological dimensions. The physical dimension of intensity, or pressure amplitude, given in decibels (dB), directly affects loudness. Frequency of pressure changes, in hertz (Hz), mainly determines pitch.

The lowest threshold value and hence the maximal sensitivity for humans is in the region of 3000 Hz.

The quantitative relationship b
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7.1 The ascending auditory pathway

Up till now we have dealt with the anatomy of the auditory periphery and how the basic attributes of sound are coded within the auditory periphery. A great deal of additional processing takes place in the neural centres that lie in the auditory brainstem and cerebral cortex. Because localisation and other binaural perceptions depend on the interaction of information arriving at the two ears, we need to study the central auditory centres, since auditory nerves from the two cochleae interact on
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6.3 Summary of Sections 4 to 6

Hair cells do not have axons and therefore do not generate action potentials.

The nerve that communicates with or innervates the hair cells along the basilar membrane is known as the vestibulocochlear nerve or VIIIth cranial nerve. The cochlear portion of the nerve contains afferent fibres that carry information in the form of action potentials from the organ of Corti to the brain, and efferent fibres that bring information from the cerebral cortex to the periphery.

Most of the af
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6.2 Number of neurons hypothesis

In addition to an increase in firing rate of neurons with differing dynamic ranges, the inclusion of discharges from many fibres whose CFs are different from those of the stimulus may also help to account for the wide dynamic range of the ear. You know from Section 3.3 that in response to a pure tone stimulus the basilar membrane vibrates maximally at a g
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5.1 Place code

We know that each hair cell occurs in a localised region of the cochlea, and that auditory nerve fibres contacting each hair cell fire action potentials in response to movement of the basilar membrane at that location. This means that the response of any given fibre should reflect the frequency selectivity of that location on the basilar membrane from which it comes. In other words, cochlear nerve fibres preserve the frequency selectivity found along the basilar membrane. Fibres on the outsid
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4 Neural processing of auditory information

In this section we will look at how the frequency selectivity found along the basilar membrane is preserved or modified by the auditory nerve and how information about the intensity of the signal is encoded in the response of the auditory nerve fibres.

The nerve that communicates with or innervates the hair cells along the basilar membrane is called the vestibulocochlear nerve or VIIIth cranial nerve. It enters the brainstem just under the cerebellum and conveys information from
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3.6 Synaptic transmission from hair cells

In addition to being sensory receptors, hair cells are also presynaptic terminals. The membrane at the base of each hair cell contains several presynaptic active zones, where chemical neurotransmitter is released. When the hair cells are depolarised, chemical transmitter is released from the hair cells to the cells of the auditory nerve fibres. Excited by this chemical transmitter, the afferent nerve fibres contacting the hair cells fire a pattern of action potentials that encode features of
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3.5.2 Mechanical force directly opens and closes transduction channels

It is believed that tip links aid in causing ‘channels’ to open and close near the top of the hair cell (Figure 16). Tip links are filamentous connections between two stereocilia. Each tip link is a fine fibre obliquely joining the distal end of one stereocilium to the side of the longest adjacent process. It is thought that each l
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