Episode 8
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Czech Title Dýchání
Original (French) Title La Respiration
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The Heart The Brain
Breathing is the eighth episode of Once Upon a Time... Life. This episode deals with respiration and gas exchange.

Plot Edit

The episode begins with exhausted Red Corpuscles carrying carbon dioxide through the alveoli of the lungs. Hemo struggles to get through the narrow passage and Globin struggles to push him through. After they both successfully make it through, the narrator gives a short presentation of the current location:

"The alveoli. How many are there? One hundred million? Six hundred or eight hundred million? The opinions differ. Their surface area is roughly 70 to 90 m2, fifty times that of the human body."
The scene switches to Peter, Claire, Jumbo and Peter's Sister jogging through the park. They are displeased with a lot of dust in the area. As they inhale and exhale rapidly, the molecules of carbon dioxide fly up and convert to the Oxygen Bubbles, out of which two are a male and female pair. The female one flies downwards to running teens, but her male companion stops her, trying to prevent her from getting sucked in. She exclaims that she doesn't like it when she's in common air, surrounded by germs and dust.

The group of dirt particles, Bacteria and Viruses plan on getting inside the respiratory systems of running kids. A Bacterium tries to convince them to be careful, but the Virus leader is too cocky. After he discusses with his colleague, he tells the chief that they should avoid entering through nasal cavity due to the good protection. The large group of Oxygen Bubbles, dust, Viruses and Bacteria starts to enter Claire's nasal cavity. Female Bubble has rather rough time experiencing filtration process as the inhaled air is racing towards the larynx. Due to too many pathogens being caught up in cilia, Claire sneezes and decides to inhale through mouth for a while. At this moment, the Bacteria and Oxygen Bubbles make their way through. The group that took the road through nose reaches the beginning of pharynx where they meet up with the group that came from mouth. As a lot of pathogens are caught in cilia, Claire triggers a cough. However, Bacterium Chief and some of his colleagues bypass the reflex action.

The air reaches the tonsils, with huge armies of Neutrophil Granulocytes and Antibodies waiting for the alert, who observe the Bacteria preparing the strategy. Metro is eager to instantly attack them, but has to listen to Lieutenant Jumbo and they decide to attack them by surprise. As Bacteria make their way through seemingly unguarded area, the Antibodies quickly jump and attack them. Some of Bacteria escape with Chief and multiply, but are interpreted by Jumbo and the police. Two Viruses watch in horror as Bacteria are neutralized and sneezed out. They quickly run for their safety out of the pharynx and into larynx.

The scene changes to Red Corpuscles delivering their oxygen and getting loaded with carbon dioxide, introducing the cellular respiration. While they begin advancing towards the heart and the Oxygen Bubbles advance through larynx, the previously frightened Viruses report the situation to the Chief. He decides to cause a tissue infection. However, despite Antibodies attacking them, they successfully destroy a few cells, releasing Interferons that carry the following messages:

"This is Interferon. Cell 17067. We're under attack."
"This is Interferon, Cell 17083, ECHO Virus attack!"
"Cell 17101. ECHO Virus is positively identified. Manufacture Antibodies!"
Maestro orders the chief of genetic central in the nucleus to begin creating Antibodies. Most of the Viruses are neutralized. As some of them enter the intercellular space, a Macrophage attacks them, but Virus Chief and his group, which was hiding, avoided the police. They enter the bloodstream and are confident that they'll avoid getting caught. However, Lieutenant Claire notices them on her screen and sets off with two Lymphocytes.
In the outside world, the bullies discuss about the jogging teens and mock them. As Stroppy coughs, the process of Nabot inhaling is shown, depicting totally destroyed, filthy from smoking nasal cavity, roaming with Bacteria while cilia are unable to stop them, same going for the police. In a mocking manner, Nabot begins to run in place, but turns really exhausted.

The scene switches to Claire's respiratory passages; at this point, the Oxygen Bubbles enter the trachea as Male and Female Bubble find themselves a little, mischievous bubble. She is shown to be troublesome, almost ending up in the wrong bronchus, interrupting a Bubble that was relaxing and colliding with a dirt particle. In the bronchioles, she gets stuck at the mucous wall and mocks the exhausted, carbon dioxide-loaded Red Corpuscles with other mischievous Bubbles. She also begins jumping on soft tissue, but is stopped by the Male Bubble as there are a lot of dirt particles in this part of the passages. They go further into the alveoli as a Macrophage finally devours the Viruses that entered.

Oxygen Bubbles reach the alveoli and meet up with the exhausted Red Corpuscles, who are relived upon getting rid of carbon dioxide and receiving oxygen. The Little Bubble makes one last mischief when she is almost late on Female Bubble's demand. Then, the Red Corpuscles start leaving the alveoli as the episode ends.

Trivia Edit

  • This is the first episode to feature the children in their teenage designs.
  • This episode feature both pulmonary and cellular respiration.
  • Process of inhalation took almost full episode, which makes it really weird when given the fact that the teens were running.

Biology Edit

  • This episode focuses on following topics:

Respiratory system Edit

Respiratory System

Labeled respiratory system.

  • Respiratory system is the organic system with the role to perform the gas exchange.
  • In humans, the respiratory system consists of following parts:
    • Air passages:
      • Nasal cavity — large, mucous, air filled space above and behind the nose. Membrane is covered in cilia which filter the air.
      • Oral cavity — entrance through which both regular respiration and first process of digestion occur.
      • Pharynx — crossroads to the esophagus, trachea, nasal and oral cavity.
      • Larynx — also known as voice box, an organ involved in breathing, producing sound and is located at the very beginning of trachea. Location of vocal cords.
      • Trachea — a cartilaginous pipe below larynx. Connects the pharynx and larynx to the lungs.
    • Lung passages:
      • Bronchi — two continuations of trachea that conduct air into the lungs. No gas exchange takes place in the bronchi.
      • Bronchioles — small continuations of bronchi. No longer have cartilaginous walls.
      • Alveoli — microscopic, hollow bubbles located at the ends of the respiratory tree. This is where gas exchange takes place.
    • Diaphragm — thin, muscular membrane with the role to assist the lungs in respiration. It contracts during inhalation and expands during exhalation.

Pulmonary respiration Edit

  • Pulmonary respiration presents the gas exchange during which blood expels carbon dioxide and gets loaded with oxygen.
  • Pulmonary respiration has two phases:
    • Pulmonary respiration

      Process of pulmonary respiration.

      Inhalation — the air full of oxygen enters the air passages and into the lungs.
    • Exhalation — the air full of carbon dioxide exits the lungs and makes it way to the outside world through the air passages.
  • Breathing through nose is healthier due to the following facts:
    1. The air is filtered from dust and microbes.
    2. The air is heating up.
    3. We can feel the scent (quality) of the inhaled air.
  • The quantity of inhaled air during the deepest inhalation is called the total lung capacity. The quantity of exhaled air during the maximum exhalation after the deepest inhalation is called the vital lung capacity.
    • Total capacity measures about 5.8 liters of air, while vital capacity measures about 4.6 liters. In our lungs, there still remains 1.2 liters of air.
  • During the normal respiration during inhalation and exhalation, human body exchanges around 0.5 liters of air (respiratory volume).

Cellular respiration Edit

  • Respiration formula

    Cellular respiration formula.

    Cellular respiration presents the conversion process of glucose and oxygen to carbon dioxide, water and ATP (adenosine triphosphate), which is released as energy.
  • Cellular respiration consists of three main stages:
    1. Glycolysis — the process during which glucose is broken down and converted to pyruvic acid. Oxygen is not necessary during this process. Glycolysis takes place in cytoplasm.
    2. Decarboxylation — the process of creating pyruvic acid from Acetyl-CoA. The product of decarboxylation is carbon dioxide. It takes place in mitochondria.
    3. Krebs cycle — metabolic process of using glucose and oxygen to create energy. This is carried out in a process of electron transportation, during which electrons enable the hydrogen atoms to enter the mitochondrial matrix and also give extra phosphates to ADP, converting it to ATP. The products of the transport chain are water (H2O) and ATP.