Control strategies in physiological systems

FASEB J. 1988 Feb;2(2):97-107. doi: 10.1096/fasebj.2.2.3277888.


In this paper, written for a general audience, I review and contrast various strategies that the body uses to control homeostasis and movement. Messages, signals, communication channels, and control systems are dealt with from both a cellular and an integrative perspective. The major global control strategies are feedback, feedforward, and adaptive control, and examples of each are presented to highlight advantageous and disadvantageous features. Many physiological systems use these three strategies in combination.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Homeostasis*
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological
  • Movement*