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Human Digestive

Chapter 10.2
Ms. Ho
Functions of the Digestive
 Ingestion
 Digestion
 Absorption
 Excretion

*Note: alternate terms for the Digestive Tract are GI

(gastrointestinal) Tract & Alimentary Canal
Mouth and Oral Cavity
 Mouth opens to the
Oral Cavity
 Teeth
 Salivary Glands
 Tongue
 Other Structures:
uvula, soft palate,
hard palate, tonsils
Teeth Structure & Function
 Mechanical digestion
OR breakdown of food
 Incisors: bite & cut
 Canines: tearing &
 Bicuspids/Premolars:
pierce & tear
 Molars: crush & grind
How are teeth modified in

Carnivore Herbivore Omnivore

Salivary Glands
 Food is mixed with saliva that is produced by
3 pairs of salivary glands
 Parotid(largest)
 Sublingual (smallest)
 Submandibular
 Uses ducts (tubular
canals) to transport
secretions to mouth
 Presence of food triggers nervous reflex in
salivary glands  release saliva via ducts
 Saliva is 99% water, mucus (glycoprotein)
& enzymes (i.e. salivary amylase)
 Function:
 protects lining of oral cavity from abrasion &
lubricates food for easier swallowing
 chemical digestion: amylase breaks down
polysaccharide (amylose  maltose)
Functions of the Tongue
 Helps mix saliva &
food together
 Positions food on
molars for chewing
 Moves food around
until it forms a bolus
(food ball) & pushes
it back to pharynx
 Primary organ for
Tongue & Taste Buds
 Muscle containing
papillae “pimple-like”
structure on upper
surface of tongue that
houses the taste buds
 4 sensory tastes:
 Sweet
 Salty
 Sour
 Bitter
Location of Taste Buds

Q: Are you a
Other Oral Cavity structures
 Uvula: flap of tissue covering nasal cavity
when swallowing food
 Tonsils: lymphoid tissue on either side of
uvula in back of throat that produces
 Hard Palate: roof of mouth, hard ridges
 Soft Palate: further back in mouth ending
in the uvula
 Common passageway for
food, liquids, and air
 Pharynx muscles assist in
swallowing of bolus
 Region connecting oral
cavity & pharynx is the
 Epiglottis: flap of tissue
that covers over opening
of trachea (glottis)
prevents food from
entering airway
 Trachea moves up
against epiglottis to
close the opening
& prevent food from
entering the trachea

 Mucin is secreted
by back of throat &
esophagus wall
Structure of the Esophagus
 Muscular, flexible
tube, ~25cm long
 3 layers:
 Mucosa (inner): lining
covered in mucus
 Submucosa (middle):
nerves, blood & lymph
 Muscularis (outer):
circular & longitudinal
Function of the Esophagus
 To conduct food from the pharynx to the stomach

 A series of
that propels
food along the
digestive tract

Q: What is it
called when
food moves
Structure of the Stomach
 J-shaped muscular sac, stretches with food
 3 layers of muscles: Longitudinal (outside), Circular
(middle) & Oblique (inner folds)
 Inner lining is folded into accordion-like ridges called
“rugae”  inc SA
 Ridges contain gastric glands that produce gastric
juice (enzymes, mucus, HCl) for chemical digestion
 Cardiac sphincter: ring of muscle controlling
entrance into stomach
 Pyloric sphincter: ring of muscle controlling exit out
of stomach
Q: How many litres
of food can the
stomach hold when
fully expanded?

Q: How long does

it take your stomach
to empty after a
Functions of the stomach
 Bulk storage of undigested food
 Mechanical breakdown of food via
rhythmic contractions (mixing of fluids)
 Chemical Digestion: breaks chemical
bonds via hydrochloric acid (pH 2) and
enzymes (pepsin & lipase)
 End product is “chyme” partially digested
food in a semi-liquid state
Stomach Lining
Mixing & Rhythmic Contractions
Structure of the Small Intestine
 Consist of a series of loops loosely attached
to the back of the abdomen
 Name is from small diameter (approx. 2.5 to
3cm diameter, 7m in length)
 Mesentery: layer of connective tissue that
holds small intestine together to prevent
entangling of intestine in abdominal cavity
 Ileocecal valve: ring of muscles (sphincter)
that controls movement of material from
small intestine to large intestine
3 Sub-regions of Small Intestine
 Duodenum
 Jejunum
 Ileum
Function of the Small Intestine
 Most of the chemical
digestion of
macromolecules &
absorption of
nutrients occurs here
 90% of products are
absorbed in small
 Other 10% absorption
occurs in stomach &
large intestines
Structure of Intestinal Wall
 Lining has folded finger-like projections
called “villi”  increase SA
 Each villus has many microscopic folds
called “microvilli”  further increase SA
to maximize absorption
 Network of capillaries & tiny lymph vessel
called “lacteal” extend into hollow core of
each villus
The Intestinal Wall

*Note: only 2 layers of muscles (circular & longitudinal muscle)

instead of 3 like the stomach (no oblique muscle)
Cross-section of Small Intestines
Surface of Intestinal Wall
Cross-section of Villus
Absorption within Small Intestines
 Nutrients are absorbed
across Intestinal cells
(Villus) either via the:
 Blood Capillaries –
amino acids &
 Lacteal – glycerol &
fatty acids
Functions within each Region
 Duodenum: (first 25cm, U-shaped)
chemical digestion occurs here, chyme
mixes w/ digestive juices from pancreas,
liver, gall bladder & intestinal wall
 Jejunum: (~3m long) most absorption of
nutrients occur here, highly folded inner
lining contains lots villi & intestinal glands
 Ileum: (~4m long) contains fewer & smaller
villi, absorb nutrients & push undigested
material into large intestine
Intestinal Movements
 Peristalsis: series of
wave-like muscular
contractions &
 Rhythmical
mixing contractions
that knead material
back and forth without
propelling it forward at
a very fast rate
Structure of the Large Intestine
 Large upside-down U-shaped organ
 Approx. 1.5m in length & 8cm in diameter
 Three main sections: ascending colon,
transverse colon & descending colon
 Chyme enters caecum a small pouch
connected to ascending colon  host to
large # of bacteria that breakdown
 Appendix a finger-like projection at the tip
of caecum  function is still a mystery
3 sections of the Large Intestine
 Ascending
 Transverse
 Descending
Functions of the Large Intestine
 Complete absorption of nutrients
 Reabsorb water, minerals & other useable
materials  prevents dehydration
 Absorb vitamins K & B (biotin, folic acid)
produced by bacteria (E. coli)
 Form, compact & store fecal matter (waste &
undigested material) prior to defecation
*Note: movement of material via peristalsis
Structure of the Large Intestines
Rectum & Anal Canal
 Last portion of the digestive tract:
 Rectum: where feces are stored until
 Anal Canal: between rectum & anus
passageway for feces, ends in Internal
(involuntary) and External (voluntary) anal
sphincters  allows body to control timing
of elimination
Digestive Questions
 How long does it take to
digest a meal?
 How is gas produced
within along the
digestive tract (2 ways)?
 How does one get
diarrhea & how does it
Accessory Organs
Pancreas, Liver &
Gall Bladder
Accessory Organs
 Large organs outside the digestive tract
that aids in chemical digestion
 Chemical secretions are carried by ducts
that empties into the digestive tract
 3 Main Accessory Organs:
 Liver
 Gall Bladder
 Pancreas
Liver, Gall Bladder & Pancreas
Structure of the Liver
 Largest internal organ, brownish-red in colour,
divided into 2 large lobes (L & R)
 Located just beneath the diaphragm
Function of the Liver
 Liver performs over 500 functions:
 Produces bile (greenish-yellow liquid) that
contains bile salts from cholesterol that helps to
emulsify large fat globules into smaller fat
droplets (easier fat digestion & lipase action)
 Emulsification: is a process that involves
molecules attracted to water at one end and fats
at the other end creating a suspension of small
fat droplets  stable emulsion
 Bile released via hepatic duct
Functions of the Liver
 Plays major role in metabolism (set of
chemical reactions that maintains life):
 Demolition: breaks down old RBC
 Recycler: parts of decomposed Hb are
recycled to make bile salts
 Storehouse: collects excess chemical in
blood (i.e. fat soluble vitamins, glucose 
 Detoxification centre: detoxifies poisons
ingested in food & water (i.e. alcohol)
Gall Bladder
 Hollow, pear-shaped organ on the
underside of the liver
 Not involved in enzyme production
 Storage warehouse for bile, release is
triggered by hormone via cystic duct
Gall Bladder
Structure of the Pancreas
 Leaf-shaped gland, ~20cm in length
 Located close to curve of stomach,
attached to the duodenum
 Pancreatic juice enters duodenum via
pancreatic duct
The Pancreas
 Produces over 28 digestive enzymes that
breaks down lipids (lipase), carbohydrates
(amylase) & proteins (trypsin, peptidase)
 Produces pancreatic juice, alkaline
substance (NaHCO3) that neutralizes
acidic chyme, so other enzymes can
 Produces insulin (hormone that regulates
blood glucose levels), allows glucose to
enter cells
Pancreas & Diabetes
 Hypoglycemic: abnormally low-levels of
glucose in blood (pancreas sends out too
much insulin to break down sugar)
 Hyperglycemic: extremely high glucose
levels or diabetes (pancreas can’t make
enough insulin or body can’t use insulin)
 Type 1: insulin dependent
 Type 2: non-insulin dependent
 Type 3: gestinational diabetes
Organs &
their ducts
Summary of the Digestive System