The Biology II Course was developed through the Ohio Department of Higher Education OER Innovation Grant. The course is part of the Ohio Transfer Assurance Guides and is also named OSC004. This work was completed and the course was posted in October 2019. For more information about credit transfer between Ohio colleges and universities, please visit: www.ohiohighered.org/transfer.Team LeadCathy Sistilli Eastern Gateway Community CollegeContent ContributorsLisa Aschemeier Northwest State Community CollegeShaun Blevins Rhodes State CollegeRachel Detraz Edison State Community College Sara Finch Sinclair Community CollegeWendy Gagliano Clark State Community College AJ Snow University of Akron Wayne CollegeLibrarianAmanda Rinehart Ohio State UniversityReview TeamJessica Hall Ohio Dominican UniversitySanhita Gupta Kent State UniversityErica Mersfelder Sinclair Community College
Solute concentrations across semi-permeable membranes influence the movement of water and solutes across the membrane. Osmoregulation and osmotic balance are important bodily functions, resulting in water and salt balance. Osmolarity is measured in units of milliequivalents or milliosmoles, both of which take into consideration the number of solute particles and the charge on them. Some organisms are osmoconformers in that they are isotonic with their environment. The kidneys are the main osmoregulatory organs in mammalian systems; they function to filter blood and maintain the osmolarity of body fluids. Many systems have evolved for excreting wastes that are simpler than the kidney and urinary systems of vertebrate animals. The simplest system is that of contractile vacuoles present in microorganisms. Flame cells and nephridia in worms perform excretory functions and maintain osmotic balance. Some insects have evolved Malpighian tubules to excrete wastes and maintain osmotic balance.
By the end of this section, you will be able to do the following:
Define osmosis and explain its role within molecules
Explain why osmoregulation and osmotic balance are important body functions
Describe active transport mechanisms
Explain osmolarity and the way in which it is measured
Describe osmoregulators or osmoconformers and how these tools allow animals to adapt to different environments