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    Adenosine triphosphate.


A nucleoside containing adenine as its base. Adenosine acts to dilate the coronary arteries and is employed in the adenosine thallium scan of the heart.



Anemia is a condition in which a deficiency in the size or number of erythrocytes (red blood cells) or the amount of hemoglobin they contain limits the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide between the blood and the tissue cells. Most anemias are caused by a lack of nutrients required for normal erythrocyte synthesis, principally iron, vitamin B-12, and folic acid. Others result from a variety of conditions, such as hemorrhage, genetic abnormalities, chronic disease states or drug toxicity.

A blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the body.

An abnormal heart rhythm, or heartbeat. The rhythm can be too fast, too slow, or irregular (beating at an off-beat rhythm). Some arrhythmias aren't a problem, but more serious arrhythmias can mean the heart is working less effectively, and may cause symptoms of palpitations, weakness, dizziness, chest pain, and shortness of breath.

Disease caused by inhalation of asbestos fibers. It usually strikes workers in the textile, cement and insulating industries. Asbestos fibers are microscopic and virtually indestructible. When they are inhaled into the lung, the lung's defense cells try to destroy the asbestos fibers, but the body's defense mechanisms cannot break down asbestos. The result is that the asbestos fibers remain in the lungs and cause scarring and the inflammation continues for decades. This thickening and scarring prevents oxygen and carbon dioxide from traveling between the tiny air sacs of the lungs and into the blood stream, so breathing becomes much less efficient.

Adenosine triphosphate
The primary fuel used by cells to generate the biochemical reactions essential for life.


Located on the top of the kidneys, these glands that are responsible for the production of stress-related hormones such as cortisol, DHEA, and adrenaline.

Adrenocortiotrophic hormone
The hormone released from the pituitary gland. It interacts with receptors on the adrenal gland to begin the process of cortisol and DHEA production. ACTH uses the second messenger cyclic AMP to signal target cells in the adrenal gland.

Adrenocortiotrophic hormone.

Advanced glycosylation endproducts
The polymerized end-products of protein cross-linked with glucose. AGEs tend to adhere to capillaries and arteries. increasing the risk of heart disease, blindness, and kidney failure. AGEs are best estimated by the levels of glycosylated hemoglobin in the bloodstream.

Aerobic capacity
The body's ability to process oxygen. It is a combination of lung capacity, the size of the capillaries, the pumping action of the heart, and transfer of oxygen from red blood cells to target tissues.

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