An apparatus is defined as

Physiology. a group of structurally different organs working together in the performance of a particular function.

An organ is defined as:

Biology. a grouping of tissues into a distinct structure, as a heart or kidney in animals or a leaf or stamen in plants, that performs a specialized task.

enter image description here

The below shows the Juxtaglomercular apparatus (JGA). Without knowing its name, how would I tell if it is an apparatus or an organ?

There is a question in my book (which asks: which organs are necessary for the continuation of the Renin-Angiotensin-Aldosteron-System) and to answer it correctly requires that we know that JGA is an apparatus and not an organ.

Is there any giveaways that show it is an apparatus and not an organ, based on the diagram alone?

I can't really tell based on the definitions above e.g. based on the diagram, I cannot tell if JGA performs "a specific task" or a "particular function".

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ It seems like a largely semantic argument and a poorly reasoned question from your book. $\endgroup$
    – kmm
    Commented Aug 25, 2016 at 13:30
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks. I thought it was a bit dodgy too, but I haven't done biology before and am trying to learn it at home, so wanted to double check I didn't miss something obvious. $\endgroup$
    – K-Feldspar
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 1:01
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ how-much aggregation makes an organ, and how-much doesn't make, doesn't have a clear-cut boundary. Its quite like "fuzzy logic". On certain contexts, a finger could be considered as organ whereas in some-other context the whole-hand could be considered as an organ. Sometimes, skin is described as an organ. So if you consider skin as an organ and hand as an organ, then, hand minus skin would be = organ minus organ=0. So clearly, the terms "organ" (and similar-terms like tissue and tissue-system), vary highly from context to context, and not very clear-cut. $\endgroup$
    – user25568
    Commented Aug 27, 2016 at 17:27
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Usually apparatus is used to group some components that together do a specific work, but as said by @kmm and AlwaysConfused it's a syntactic question. I'm not completely sure about that (will check that asap) but the word apparatus (generally speaking of the animal/human body but not limited to that) etymologically (Latin) was considered as a group of organs that are involved in a specific function of the organism. $\endgroup$
    – DavideN
    Commented Sep 8, 2016 at 9:06


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