Negative feedback - Higher

In mammals, conditions such as water concentration, temperature and glucose concentration must be kept as constant as possible. These are examples of homeostasis.

A negative feedback mechanism is an important type of control that is used in homeostasis. A negative feedback control system responds when conditions change from the ideal or set point and returns conditions to this set point. There is a continuous cycle of events in negative feedback.

General stages in negative feedback

In general:

  • if the level of something rises, control systems reduce it again
  • if the level of something falls, control systems raise it again
Conditions in the body change from set point, the change is detected and corrective mechanisms are activated. Conditions then return to set point and corrective mechanisms are switched off.Negative feedback flowchart

An example of negative feedback is the control of body temperature.

If the body gets too hot, it begins to sweat to try to reduce the temperature. If the body gets too cold, it begins to shiver to try to raise the temperature.

The glucose concentration in the blood is also controlled by negative feedback mechanisms.