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Ecological and Environmental Physiology of Amphibians$
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Stanley S. Hillman, Philip C. Withers, Robert C. Drewes, and Stanley D. Hillyard

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780198570325

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198570325.001.0001

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Specialized Physiological Characteristics of Amphibia

Specialized Physiological Characteristics of Amphibia

Chapter:
(p.165) 3 Specialized Physiological Characteristics of Amphibia
Source:
Ecological and Environmental Physiology of Amphibians
Author(s):

Stanley S. Hillman

Philip C. Withers

Robert C. Drewes

Stanley D. Hillyard

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198570325.003.0003

This chapter delineates the specialized physiological characteristics of amphibians, including anatomy and physiology of physiological processes of amphibians that have served as unique and powerful model systems for other vertebrates. It first describes how the skin and urinary bladder have been models for water and solute transport, in both water and air, followed by an analysis of the physiological mechanisms involved in the remarkable capacity of amphibians to withstand dehydration. The biology and physiology of thermoregulation is then explored, followed by an analysis of the range and limitations of temperature to activity metabolism, both aerobic and anaerobic. The diverse range of nitrogen excretory products of amphibians, along with their varied kidney physiology, is then described. Finally, the benefits of developmental plasticity are explored as a model.

Keywords:   skin, urinary bladder, dehydration tolerance, temperature regulation, aerobic metabolism, anaerobic metabolism, nitrogen excretion, kidney, nephrostome, developmental plasticity

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