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This is a series of six lectures on themes suggested and illustrated by the author's researches on the heart and its nervous control. The first two chapters, on living matter, are adapted to give lay readers as well as physicians an interesting account of current views and problems about the organization of the stuff that life is made of. The two chapters on inhibition and will develop an assimilative theory of inhibition which relates inhibition with intense anabolic activity. The remaining two chapters deal with excitability and automatism. Automatism is the primordial form of motor mechanism. This primary automatism is due to a nutritive cycle within the cells. As the organism becomes more complex, it becomes more excitable, more unstable. This excitability is superposed on the primary automaticity. "Thus, in the different stages of embryonic life, as in the different species, automatism prevails in the lower forms and excitability is
Brain and Heart: Lectures on Physiology.. JAMA. 1926;87(17):1414. doi:10.1001/jama.1926.02680170068038