Tissue engineering for neuromuscular disorders of the gastrointestinal tract

Kenneth L Koch, John E Fortunato, Section on Gastroenterology, Department of Medicine, Wake Forest University School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, NC 27101, United States.
World Journal of Gastroenterology (Impact Factor: 2.37). 12/2012; 18(47):6918-25. DOI: 10.3748/wjg.v18.i47.6918
Source: PubMed


The digestive tract is designed for the optimal processing of food that nourishes all organ systems. The esophagus, stomach, small bowel, and colon are sophisticated neuromuscular tubes with specialized sphincters that transport ingested food-stuffs from one region to another. Peristaltic contractions move ingested solids and liquids from the esophagus into the stomach; the stomach mixes the ingested nutrients into chyme and empties chyme from the stomach into the duodenum. The to-and-fro movement of the small bowel maximizes absorption of fat, protein, and carbohydrates. Peristaltic contractions are necessary for colon function and defecation.

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