Search Mailing List Archives
[Gofriends] Mistake in GO structure?
aji at ebi.ac.uk
Mon Jan 17 07:39:11 PST 2011
On 17 Jan 2011, at 07:23, Wacek Kusnierczyk wrote:
> Breathing is inhaling and exhaling air (or whatever happens to be
> around us) into the lungs. In the lungs, oxygen diffuses into the
> blood, and carbon dioxide diffuses from the blood. The circulatory
> system then takes the oxygen to other tissues, and brings a new
> portion of carbon dioxide from the tissues, while the respiratory
> system takes care of the waste and brings new oxygen for the next
> Breathing is a respiratory system process. Now,
> (a) If the whole process of removing co2 from the blood and
> replacing it with o2 is called 'respiratory gaseous exchange' (or
> 'respiration' for short, as your broad synonym acknowledges), then
> breathing is a *part* of it; saying that breathing *is* respiratory
> gaseous exchange is plainly wrong.
> (b) On the other hand, if the term 'gaseous exchange' (or 'gas
> exchange', as I find it in my textbooks) is used as it seems in
> medical terminology to name the process by which oxygen and carbon
> dioxide diffuse through alveolar cells, base membranes, and
> capillary endothelial cells in the lungs, then breathing is
> *separate* from respiratory gas exchange, and both *are* respiratory
> system processes and are *parts* of respiration.
> Either way, GO has it wrong. Just look at the 'definition' (sneer
> quotes intended) of 'respiratory gaseous exchange':
> "The process of gaseous exchange between an organism and its
> environment. In plants, microorganisms, and many small animals, air
> or water makes direct contact with the organism's cells or tissue
> fluids, and the processes of diffusion supply the organism with
> dioxygen (O2) and remove carbon dioxide (CO2). In larger animals the
> efficiency of gaseous exchange is improved by specialized
> respiratory organs, such as lungs and gills, which are ventilated by
> breathing mechanisms."
> This 'definition' says, among others, two things:
> (a) gaseous exchange is gaseous exchange;
> (b) in larger animals (that is?) gaseous exchange is improved by
> respiratory organs, which a re ventilated by breathing mechanisms.
> From (a), it seems that the author wasn't able to give a clear
> explanation of what precisely is meant by 'gaseous exchange'. From
> (b), it seems that ventilation by breathing improves gas exchange,
> from which it is very hard to me to draw the conclusion that
> breathing *is* respiratory gas exchange.
> Should this matter in anyway, I remain convinced that the GO is
> confused here.
Could you suggest a better structure and choice of term names, in that
case? You seem to have a better grasp on gaseous exchange, breathing,
and respiration than these terms have managed.
GO Editorial Office
http://www.berkeleybop.org || http://www.ebi.ac.uk
Preventing Euthanasia Through Rescue: http://petrescueinc.org
More information about the go-friends