Gastrointestinal tract

Abbreviations

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The whole human GI tract is about nine metres 30 feet long at autopsy. A high-meat diet stimulates the sympathetic system and tones down parasympathetic activity. Satellite cells are crucial for skeletal muscle adaptation to exercise. However, it is preferable to have a fresh fruit salad, using as many fresh fruits in season as possible. Elevation in markers of inflammation predicts outcomes of patients with acute coronary syndromes, independently of myocardial damage.

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The structure and function can be described both as gross anatomy and as microscopic anatomy or histology. The tract itself is divided into upper and lower tracts, and the intestines small and large parts. The upper gastrointestinal tract consists of the mouth , pharynx , esophagus , stomach , and duodenum.

This differentiates the embryonic borders between the foregut and midgut, and is also the division commonly used by clinicians to describe gastrointestinal bleeding as being of either "upper" or "lower" origin. Upon dissection , the duodenum may appear to be a unified organ, but it is divided into four segments based upon function, location, and internal anatomy.

The four segments of the duodenum are as follows starting at the stomach, and moving toward the jejunum: The suspensory muscle attaches the superior border of the ascending duodenum to the diaphragm. The suspensory muscle is an important anatomical landmark which shows the formal division between the duodenum and the jejunum, the first and second parts of the small intestine, respectively. The lower gastrointestinal tract includes most of the small intestine and all of the large intestine.

In humans, the small intestine is further subdivided into the duodenum , jejunum and ileum while the large intestine is subdivided into the, cecum , ascending, transverse, descending and sigmoid colon , rectum , and anal canal.

The small intestine begins at the duodenum and is a tubular structure, usually between 6 and 7 m long. There are three major divisions:. The large intestine also called the colon, consists of the cecum , rectum , and anal canal. It also includes the appendix , which is attached to the cecum.

The colon is further divided into:. The main function of the large intestine is to absorb water. The area of the large intestinal mucosa of an adult human is about 2 m 2. The gut is an endoderm -derived structure. At approximately the sixteenth day of human development, the embryo begins to fold ventrally with the embryo's ventral surface becoming concave in two directions: The result is that a piece of the yolk sac , an endoderm -lined structure in contact with the ventral aspect of the embryo, begins to be pinched off to become the primitive gut.

The yolk sac remains connected to the gut tube via the vitelline duct. Usually this structure regresses during development; in cases where it does not, it is known as Meckel's diverticulum. During fetal life, the primitive gut is gradually patterned into three segments: Although these terms are often used in reference to segments of the primitive gut, they are also used regularly to describe regions of the definitive gut as well. Each segment of the gut is further specified and gives rise to specific gut and gut-related structures in later development.

Components derived from the gut proper, including the stomach and colon , develop as swellings or dilatations in the cells of the primitive gut. In contrast, gut-related derivatives — that is, those structures that derive from the primitive gut but are not part of the gut proper, in general develop as out-pouchings of the primitive gut. The blood vessels supplying these structures remain constant throughout development. The gastrointestinal tract has a form of general histology with some differences that reflect the specialization in functional anatomy.

The mucosa is the innermost layer of the gastrointestinal tract. The mucosa surrounds the lumen , or open space within the tube. This layer comes in direct contact with digested food chyme. The mucosa is made up of:. The mucosae are highly specialized in each organ of the gastrointestinal tract to deal with the different conditions. The most variation is seen in the epithelium.

The submucosa consists of a dense irregular layer of connective tissue with large blood vessels, lymphatics, and nerves branching into the mucosa and muscularis externa. It contains the submucosal plexus , an enteric nervous plexus , situated on the inner surface of the muscularis externa.

The muscular layer consists of an inner circular layer and a longitudinal outer layer. The circular layer prevents food from traveling backward and the longitudinal layer shortens the tract. The layers are not truly longitudinal or circular, rather the layers of muscle are helical with different pitches.

The inner circular is helical with a steep pitch and the outer longitudinal is helical with a much shallower pitch. Whilst the muscularis externa is similar throughout the entire gastrointestinal tract, an exception is the stomach which has an additional inner oblique muscular layer to aid with grinding and mixing of food.

The muscularis externa of the stomach is composed of the inner oblique layer, middle circular layer and outer longitudinal layer. Between the circular and longitudinal muscle layers is the myenteric plexus.

Activity is initiated by the pacemaker cells, myenteric interstitial cells of Cajal. The gut has intrinsic peristaltic activity basal electrical rhythm due to its self-contained enteric nervous system. The rate can be modulated by the rest of the autonomic nervous system. The coordinated contractions of these layers is called peristalsis and propels the food through the tract.

Food in the GI tract is called a bolus ball of food from the mouth down to the stomach. After the stomach, the food is partially digested and semi-liquid, and is referred to as chyme. In the large intestine the remaining semi-solid substance is referred to as faeces. The outermost layer of the gastrointestinal tract consists of several layers of connective tissue.

Intraperitoneal parts of the GI tract are covered with serosa. These include most of the stomach , first part of the duodenum , all of the small intestine , caecum and appendix , transverse colon , sigmoid colon and rectum. In these sections of the gut there is clear boundary between the gut and the surrounding tissue.

These parts of the tract have a mesentery. Retroperitoneal parts are covered with adventitia. They blend into the surrounding tissue and are fixed in position. For example, the retroperitoneal section of the duodenum usually passes through the transpyloric plane. These include the esophagus , pylorus of the stomach, distal duodenum , ascending colon , descending colon and anal canal.

In addition, the oral cavity has adventitia. International Conferences are rendering perfect platform for global networking for the renowned speakers and scientists across the globe through a most exciting and memorable scientific event filled with much enlightening interactive sessions, world class exhibitions and poster presentations.

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