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Glossary

Adrenal Gland

An organ that sits near the kidney and produces various hormones.

Bacterium

Any of a group of one-celled microscopic organisms which may be round, rod-like, or spiral shaped. They live in soil, water, organic matter, or the bodies of plants and animals.

Carbohydrate

A compound made of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen; for example, sugars, starches, and cellulose. Most carbohydrates we eat are made by plants and are found in fruit, grains, and vegetables. 

Cells

The smallest unit of life able to function on its own, a cell is surrounded by a membrane, and includes at least one or more nuclei and other cellular organs.

Enzymes

A complex protein that the body produces to set off certain biochemical reactions at certain temperatures in the body. 

Epinephrine

A hormone secreted by the adrenal gland which raises the bodys blood pressure. It has many medicinal uses such as a heart stimulant.

Gene

The functional unit of inheritance which directs the production of a protein to perform a certain task.

Glucagon

A hormone secreted by the pancreas that increases the amount of sugar in the blood by increasing the rate of the breakdown of stored sugar in the liver.

Hormones

A substance produced by living cells which has a specific effect on cells activity far from where the hormone came from. Hormones circulate in the blood to reach their target cells.

Human Genome

All of the genetic information contained in a humans chromosomes.

Inherited

Passed down through the genes of the mother or father. 

Intestine

The tubular part of the digestive system that runs from the stomach to the anus, and includes the colon and rectum.

Membranes

A thin skin that protects a cells inner parts and helps to maintain the cells shape.

Molecular

Composed of one or more atoms, the molecule is the smallest particle of a substance that retains the properties of that substance.

Mutation

A physical or biochemical change in a gene that can lead to a physical effect in the body.

Pituitary Gland

A small organ in the brain that secretes hormones which control the bodys basic functions, such as growth, development, reproduction, and renal function, either directly or indirectly through other organs.

Proteins

A complex substance made of amino acids and other elements produced by living organisms. Proteins include enzymes, hormones, and immunoglobulins. 

Receptor

A molecule on a cells surface or in the cell that attaches to a specific chemical group, molecule or virus. 

Toxin

A poisonous substance produced by a living organism which causes great instability when put in tissues. 

Transducer

An element that coverts a message into another understandable form. 

Transducer Molecules

An element that coverts a message into another understandable form.