Respiratory reflexes are controlled by the respiratory center. The level of carbon dioxide in the circulating blood is one of the major influences upon the respiratory reflex.
The individual intercostal nerves innervate the intercostal muscles.
The muscles attached to and moving the rib cage are innervated by their appropriate nerves.
The diaphragm is innervated by its own individual pair of phrenic nerves.
Nutrient blood provides nourishment and oxygen to the tissues of the lung. Functional blood is actually involved in the respiratory exchange of gases between the alveoli and the capillaries.
The pulmonary cycle originates in the right ventricle of the heart. Contraction of the right ventricle forces the blood into the pulmonary arch, which divides into the right and left pulmonary arteries to their respective lungs.
Paralleling the branching of the respiratory tree, the arteries divide and subdivide within the lungs. These arteries lead to capillaries in the vicinity of the alveoli.
The blood, now saturated with oxygen, is collected by the pulmonary venous system. The blood is deposited ultimately into the left atrium of the heart.
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