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Homeostatic Control: How does the human body keep itself in balance? Virtual Lab

Ever wondered how your body constantly regulates itself to stay healthy? Visit the Homeostatic Control lab to learn all about the concept of homeostasis and how it can be applied to a wide range of systems, from blood pressure to body temperature.

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Homeostatic Control: How does the human body keep itself in balance?

About this Simulation

The human body is a very complex combination of finely-tuned machinery. So how does it constantly keep everything in balance? In this simulation, you will learn about the basic workflow behind the homeostatic process, through the examples of body temperature, blood pressure and blood sugar regulation.

Observe homeostasis in action

Test different settings on our virtual volunteer, Phineas: switch the air conditioning on and off, have him practice different intensities of workout and feed him some yummy sugary snacks, all while observing how his body reacts to all these different stimuli. From your observations, you will have to find the sensors detecting the stimuli, the control center processing them and the effectors acting to counter them on Phineas’ body. You will also analyze the impact of the stimuli on essential physiological variables such as blood pressure, heart rate, body temperature and more.

Identify the actors in homeostatic regulation pathways

Using a 3D model of a human body, apply the basic model of homeostasis by identifying the sensors, control center and effectors for three different regulation pathways: body temperature, blood pressure and blood sugar. You will be able to control different stimuli to apply one or more at a time on the test subject, with an immediate visible impact on physiological variables. Finally, you will have to interpret the resulting changes in those variables to explain the homeostatic phenomenon.

Keep the test subject’s body in balance

Through the study of body temperature, blood pressure and blood sugar regulation, will you be able to prevent the body from going into shock and maintain a healthy balance?

Learning Objectives

At the end of this simulation, you will be able to:

  • List some of the main physiological variables under homeostatic control

  • Employ appropriate vocabulary to discuss the processes and concepts of homeostasis

  • Explain the steps in a homeostatic pathway from stimulus to response

  • Compare different types of feedback loops

  • Identify signs of homeostatic disruption and determine the underlying mechanism

Techniques in Lab

At the end of this simulation, you will be able to:

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