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PHSL233 Cellular, Gastrointestinal and Renal Physiology

The epithelial and integrative functions of the gastrointestinal and renal systems of the human body will be examined at the cellular and molecular levels. Examples of pathophysiological conditions will be highlighted.

PHSL 233 builds on and extends the renal/urinary and gastrointestinal system topics introduced in HUBS 192.

Paper title Cellular, Gastrointestinal and Renal Physiology
Paper code PHSL233
Subject Physiology
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points
Teaching period Second Semester
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,080.30
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $5,159.70

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HUBS 191 and HUBS 192 and two of BIOC 192, CELS 191, CHEM 191, PHSI 191
PHSL 251, PHCY 251, PHTY 251, MELS 251
Recommended Preparation
PHSL 231
Schedule C
Essential for Physiology, and Functional Human Biology majors
Teaching staff

Course Convener: Dr Andrew Bahn
Lecturers: Associate Professor Kirk Hamilton, Associate Professor Fiona McDonald, Dr Andrew Bahn, Dr Mike Gill, Dr Toni-Ann Alsop, and Dr Martin Fronius

Note: the teaching staff list may be updated. See the 'more information' link above for details.

Paper Structure

The lecture blocks will focus on:

  • Cellular physiology
  • Introduction to epithelia
  • Cellular communication and signaling in epithelia
  • Epithelial polarity and protein trafficking
  • Renal system
  • Gastrointestinal system

Six laboratories will give you skills in a range of techniques:

  • Passive movement of solutes through cell membranes, osmosis
  • Glucose transport into everted sacs of the small intestine
  • The properties of epithelia
  • Renal function
  • DNA analysis of the ENaC and ROMK1 genes
  • Smooth muscle contraction


  • Internal assessment (30%) comprises two evening progress tests
  • Final examination comprises 70% of the final grade
Teaching Arrangements
You will attend 2 or 3 lectures each week and a laboratory session on alternate weeks.

The primary textbook for this paper is 'Berne & Levy Physiology', 7th edn, 2018, eds. Koeppen & Stanton.

Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Ethics, Research, Self-motivation, Teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
  • Acquired extensive knowledge of the physiology of the renal and gastrointestinal systems and some pathophysiological conditions that affect epithelial tissues
  • Mastered skills to study epithelial characteristics
  • Developed an understanding of ethics in physiology

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Second Semester

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Wednesday 09:00-09:50 28, 30, 32, 34, 37, 39, 41
Thursday 09:00-09:50 28-34, 36-41
Friday 09:00-09:50 28-34, 36-41


Stream Days Times Weeks
Attend one stream from
A1 Monday 14:00-16:50 29, 31, 33, 36, 38, 40
A2 Thursday 14:00-16:50 29, 31, 33, 36, 38, 40
A3 Friday 14:00-16:50 29, 31, 33, 36, 38, 40