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Unformatted text preview: Practice Questions: Lectures I-IV. Here are some practice questions on the material covered in Lectures I-IV. In the case of the multiple choice questions, there can be more than one correct answer. Caveat . My best efforts notwithstanding, this document almost certainly contains mistakes, typos, etc. Your calling these to my attention will be greatly appreciated. 1. Biology is a diverse field composed of numerous sub-disciplines: biochemistry, molecular biology, etc . Much of this disciplinary diversity reflects what is sometimes called the hierarchical nature of biological organization. 2. One approach to thinking about biological complexity is to distinguish system from environment . According to this construct, the system's time evolution is affected by the state of the system and the state of the environment , whereas the time evolution of the environment is unaffected by the state of the system . 3. The effect of the state of a system on its future time evolution is called feedback . 4. A famous example of a global biological pattern resulting from local interactions is the lattice of hexagonal cells within a bee hive called the "honey comb." The creation of the comb is especially impressive since the worker bees that construct it live in total darkness and never see the overall structure. Instead, they react to local stimuli when deciding where to lay down wax. The production of macroscopic structure from interactions on smaller length scales is an example of an emergent property . 5. If system variables separate cleanly with regard to time scales / length scales , one can reduce the number that must be considered. 6. Consider the maintenance of constant body temperature in mammals as described in lecture and on p. 793 of your text. Designate each of the following phenomena as "fast," "slow" or on the "same" time scale as physiological processes: a. Proton / electron vibrations; b. Physiological processes regulating metabolism and blood flow; c. 24 hour day-night cycle; d. 12 month cycle of the seasons; fast, same, slow, slow 7. Which of the following physical theories illustrates the idea of emergent properties ? a. Universal gravitation b. General relativity c. Kinetic theory of gasses d. Quantum mechanics e. Special relativity 8. A system is said to be in equilibrium if in the absence of external perturbations, it undergoes no change . 9. An equilibrium is said to be stable if, following a small perturbation, it returns to equilibrium. 10. Pack hunting allows wolves to bring down large animals that would likely defeat a lone attacker. Assuming that wolves depend on large prey to get through the winter, one imagines that the "no-wolf" equilibrium, N wolf = 0, is a. Stable with negative feedback; b. Stable with positive feedback; c. Unstable with negative feedback; d. Unstable with positive feedback....
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- Spring '08