World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Enteric nervous system

Article Id: WHEBN0000193757
Reproduction Date:

Title: Enteric nervous system  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Neurogastroenterology, Nervous system, Myenteric plexus, Neuroeffector junction, Basal electrical rhythm
Collection: Enteric Nervous System
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Enteric nervous system

The enteric nervous system is embedded in the lining of the gastrointestinal system.

The enteric nervous system (ENS) or intrinsic nervous system is one of the main divisions of the nervous system and consists of a mesh-like system of neurons that governs the function of the gastrointestinal system.[1] It is now usually referred to as separate from the autonomic nervous system since it has its own independent reflex activity.[2][3]

It is derived from neural crest cells.[4][5]

Contents

  • Structure 1
  • Function 2
    • Complexity 2.1
  • Additional images 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5
  • Further references 6
  • External links 7

Structure

The enteric nervous system consists of some 500 million neurons,[6] (including the various types of Dogiel cells),[1][7] one two-hundredth of the number of neurons in the brain, and 5 times as many as the one hundred million neurons in the spinal cord.[8] The enteric nervous system is embedded in the lining of the gastrointestinal system, beginning in the esophagus and extending down to the anus.[8]

The neurons of the ENS are collected into two types of ganglia: myenteric (Auerbach's) and submucosal (Meissner's) plexuses.[9] Myenteric plexuses are located between the inner and outer layers of the muscularis externa, while submucosal plexuses are located in the submucosa.

Function

The ENS is capable of autonomous functions[10] such as the coordination of reflexes; although it receives considerable innervation from the autonomic nervous system, it can and does operate independently of the brain and the spinal cord.[11] Its study is the focus of neurogastroenterology.

ENS function can be damaged by ischemia.[12] Transplantation, previously described as a theoretical possibility,[13] has been a clinical reality in the United States since 2011 and is currently performed at a number of approved centers.[14]

Complexity

The enteric nervous system has been described as a "second brain" for several reasons. The enteric nervous system can operate autonomously. It normally communicates with the central nervous system (CNS) through the parasympathetic (e.g., via the vagus nerve) and sympathetic (e.g., via the prevertebral ganglia) nervous systems. However, vertebrate studies show that when the vagus nerve is severed, the enteric nervous system continues to function.[15]

In vertebrates, the enteric nervous system includes efferent neurons, afferent neurons, and interneurons, all of which make the enteric nervous system capable of carrying reflexes and acting as an integrating center in the absence of CNS input. The sensory neurons report on mechanical and chemical conditions. Through intestinal muscles, the motor neurons control peristalsis and churning of intestinal contents. Other neurons control the secretion of enzymes. The enteric nervous system also makes use of more than 30 neurotransmitters, most of which are identical to the ones found in CNS, such as acetylcholine, dopamine, and serotonin. More than 90% of the body's serotonin lies in the gut, as well as about 50% of the body's dopamine, which is currently being studied to further our understanding of its utility in the brain.[16]

The enteric nervous system has the capacity to alter its response depending on such factors as bulk and nutrient composition. In addition, ENS contains support cells which are similar to astroglia of the brain and a diffusion barrier around the capillaries surrounding ganglia which is similar to the blood–brain barrier of cerebral blood vessels.[17]

Additional images

See also

References

  1. ^ a b
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ (also NeuroScienceStuff, archived 2013-05-04)
  7. ^ Gray's page #921
  8. ^ a b
  9. ^
  10. ^ "enteric nervous system" at Dorland's Medical Dictionary
  11. ^ Gershon & 1998 17.
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/436543_2
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^ Silverthorn, Dee U.(2007)."Human Physiology". Pearson Education, Inc., San Francisco, CA 94111.

Further references

  • Grosell M, Farrell A P and Brauner C J (Eds) (2010) Fish Physiology: The Multifunctional Gut of Fish Academic Press. ISBN 9780080961361.

External links

  • Physiology: 6/6ch2/s6ch2_29 - Essentials of Human Physiology
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.