Fall 2021 - BPK 305 D100

Human Physiology I (3)

Class Number: 5758

Delivery Method: Remote


  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo, We, Fr 11:30 AM – 12:20 PM

  • Exam Times + Location:

    Dec 20, 2021
    3:30 PM – 6:30 PM

  • Prerequisites:

    BPK 205, MBB 231 (or 201), MATH 155 (or 152). Majors from outside BPK require BPK 205 (or BISC 305), MBB 231 (or 201), MATH 155 (or 152) plus permission of the instructor.



A detailed examination of the physiology and pathophysiology of the cardiac, vascular and respiratory systems. The course focuses on integration of physiological mechanisms at the molecular, cellular and systems levels.


COURSE OVERVIEW: This course is an advanced course in cardiovascular and respiratory physiology. The information learned in BPK205 is the starting point for discussions about these systems. Students are encouraged to review their BPK205 notes and text (Human Physiology by Silverthorn) prior to the start of the BPK305 lectures.

This course will be taught using online/distance learning. Teaching will incorporate a blend of synchronous and asynchronous learning.  

TUTORIAL TIMES & LOCATION (1 hour tutorial per week)

To be determined. Tutorials will be taught using online/distance learning. Teaching will incorporate a blend of synchronous and asynchronous learning.  

Lecture 1             Constituents of blood
Lecture 2             Cardiac contractile elements
Lecture 3             Regulation of cardiac contraction
Lecture 4             Ionic basis of the cardiac action potential
Lecture 5             Initiation of the cardiac action potential
Lecture 6             The electrocardiogram
Lecture 7             Excitation-contraction coupling
Lecture 8             Cardiac cycle and metabolism
Lecture 9             Arterial vasculature
Lecture 10           Vascular smooth muscle
Lecture 11           Regulation of vascular smooth muscle
Midterm 1          
Lecture 12           Capillaries, lymphatics and veins
Lecture 13           Venous return
Lecture 14           Special circulations
Lecture 15           Foetal circulation
Lecture 16           Regulation of blood pressure I
Lecture 17           Regulation of blood pressure II
Lecture 18           Cardiovascular adjustments to exercise
Lecture 19           Atherosclerosis I
Lecture 20           Atherosclerosis II
Lecture 21           Myocardial ischaemia – pathology
Lecture 22           Myocardial ischaemia – etiology
Midterm 2         
Lecture 23           Organisation of the respiratory system
Lecture 24           Mechanics of breathing I
Lecture 25           Mechanics of breathing II
Lecture 26           Pulmonary function testing
Lecture 27           Ventilation perfusion I
Lecture 28           Ventilation perfusion II
Lecture 29           Gas exchange
Lecture 30           Gas transport
Lecture 31           Acid-base regulation
Lecture 32           Control of ventilation I
Lecture 33           Control of ventilation II
Midterm 3          To be scheduled during the final exam sitting. 


• define the basic constituents of blood and explain the functional role of the main classes of blood components

• define the basic constituents of blood and explain the functional role of the main classes of blood components

• define the molecular and structural determinants responsible for the contractile properties of cardiac muscle

• explain how cardiac muscle function is physiologically regulated

• explain the role of ion channels in the initiation and propagation of cardiac action potentials and their modulation by the autonomic nervous system

• relate features of the electrocardiogram to physiological propagation of action potentials across the heart

• demonstrate an understanding of the integrated regulation of cardiac output, stroke volume and heart rate at the molecular, cellular and system level through neuronal, humoral and mechanical mechanisms

• explain the principle of / recognize the core parameters of common cardiovascular tests

• describe how cardiac muscle is suited to the metabolism of fat as an energy source and how this dictates the need for tight regulation of coronary blood flow

• define the cellular and molecular properties and function of the various vessel within the vascular tree

• explain the neural, metabolic, myogenic and humoral regulation of vascular tone by smooth muscle and endothelial cells at the molecular, cellular and system levels

• distinguish the concepts of auto-regulation, capacitance, resistance and compliance as control mechanisms that regulate blood flow at the systemic and regional level

• use vascular- and cardiac-function curves to illustrate the intrinsic matching of venous return and cardiac output

• explain how venous return and cardiac output are maintained at steady state levels

• apply Ohm's and Poiseuille's Laws to the regulation of mean arterial pressure

• explain the acute and chronic regulation of blood pressure through neural, paracrine, humoral and renal mechanisms

• apply Fick’s Law to explain the exchange of fluids, metabolites and gases across capillary and alveolar membranes

• consider special circulatory adaptations including those of skin, muscle, brain, fetus and neonate, and kidney

• explain how the circulatory system adapts to acute and repeated exercise

• explain the etiology and cellular and molecular pathology of atherosclerosis and its consequences in terms of myocardial ischemia and infarct

• describe mechanisms of pathophysiological perturbations of blood pressure control, their consequences and treatment

• describe the structure and function of respiratory system components at moelcular, cellular and systems levels

• explain how the mechanical properties of the lungs influence respiration

• explain the principle of / recognize the core parameters of common respiratory tests

• discuss the regulation of ventilation and perfusion, how they are matched, and the consequences of a mismatch

• explain the exchange and transport of blood gases at the lung and tissue interfaces

• understand the concept of acid-base balance and how this is achieved

• describe central and peripheral ventilatory control mechanisms

• discuss the pathological basis for common respiratory disorders


  • Tutorials & Participation 10%
  • Midterms (3 @ 20% each) 60%
  • Final exam (Cumulative) 30%


Students who miss examinations due to exceptional circumstances (such as serious illness or compassionate reasons) are required to obtain a physician's certificate, whereby the physician states that you were unable to write your midterm or final on the set date due to a medical condition beyond your control, or other supporting documents in order to obtain consideration in the course. Such documents must be filed with the Department Chair (via the Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology office) or Registrar within four calendar days of the date on which the examination was to have been written. Exceptional circumstances must be approved by the Undergraduate Program Committee in order for a student to receive consideration. Students must check the examination schedule when making course selections. Students are reminded that final examinations may be scheduled at any time during the examination period and that students should avoid making travel or employment arrangements for this period. In the event of a missed midterm or final examination the instructors reserve the right to give an oral examination of the material. Approximate midterm dates are provided, but may be subject to change.

ACADEMIC HONESTY AND STUDENT CONDUCT Academic honesty is a condition of continued membership in the University community. Academic dishonesty, including plagiarism or any other form of cheating is subject to serious academic penalty. The University codes of student conduct and academic honesty are contained in policies T10.01 and T10.02 which are available in the Course Timetable and on the Web via http://www.reg.sfu.ca.


Participation in synchronous components requires students to have reliable high-speed internet access, a computer (ideally with a webcam) and headphones. Remote invigilation may be used for examinations.







With reduced opportunities for synchronous learning and the potential for reduced opportunities for direct communications, students are strongly encouraged to follow along with lecture topics in either of the recommended texts.

Department Undergraduate Notes:

It is the responsibility of the student to keep their BPK course outlines if they plan on furthering their education.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in fall 2021 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with approximately 70 to 80 per cent of classes in person/on campus, with safety plans in place.  Whether your course will be in-person or through remote methods will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the fall 2021 term.