Calcium Metabolism and Calcium Homeostasis

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Calcium regulation has significant effects on the human body's capacity to maintain homeostasis. Around 99% of the body's calcium is found within the skeleton in the form of calcium salts. The remaining 1% is found in blood and controlled within a very narrow range by an elaborate system of controls to provide for fundamental processes (Marieb & Hoehn 2010). Calcium is the most abundant cation found in human bodies, vital to normal function of a host of processes including: nerve excitability, hormone secretion, blood clotting, taste transduction, muscle function and cellular adhesion (Hutchins 2014). This essay will outline some of the more important roles of calcium metabolism. The essay will begin by discussing how calcium provides for bone growth and calcium reserves, it will then discuss the importance of calcium in muscle contraction and a brief overview of the calcium signalling toolkit. The final section will then turn to consider chemical synapses. This essay will argue that calcium regulation is a key element integral for human life. Bones Calcium (Ca+, Ca2+) is a mineral which is integral for the formation, growth and maintenance of healthy bones. Bone formation or osteogenesis is an essential process which starts before week eight in a human embryo and continues until the age of approx 25 (Hill 2014). Bones or the skeleton not only protect organs and support the body, they also account for 99% of the bodies total calcium and function as a reserve which can be released into the body when required. Non-crystalline forms of bone salts combined with ca2+Pi to instinctively form tiny crystals of hydroxyapatite which then further catalyses the crystallisation of calcium salts in that area. Calcium salts are set down... ... middle of paper ... ...521/ Marieb, E & Hoehn, K. (2010). Human Anatomy and Physiology, (8th edn). San Francisco: Pearson Noble, D and Hercheulz, A. (2007). Role of Na/Ca exchange and the plasma membrane Ca2+-ATPase in cell function. Conference on Na/Ca Exchange, Vol. 8, no.3, pp. 228-232, viewed 20 March 2014, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1808037/ Shane, E and Dinaz, I (2006). Hypercalcaemia: Pathogenesis, clinical manifestations, differential diagnosis and management, Department of Medicine, Columbia University, New York, viewed 15 Mach 2014, http://www.homepages.ucl.ac.uk/~ucgatma/Anat3048/PAPERS%20etc/ASBMR%20Primer%20Ed%206/Ch%2026-41%20-%20Disorders%20of%20Serum%20Minerals.pdf Tamarkin, D (2011). Synapses, Springfield Technical Community College, Massachusetts, viewed 18 March 2014, http://faculty.stcc.edu/AandP/AP/AP1pages/nervssys/unit11/synapses.htm

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