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TOK: This is an example of a paradigm shift, where existing ideas about the tolerance of bacteria to stomach acid were incorrect but persisted for a time despite the evidence. Aim 7: Data logging with pH sensors and lipase, and data logging with colorimeters and amylase can be used. The diagram to the left is of the alimentary canal also known as the digestive tract and also shows other organs of the digestive system like the liver.
After being swallowed, the food travels down the Oesophagus or esophagus, this is continually being damaged by the friction of food, so the epithelium is a few cells thick and secretes mucas to lubricate the food's passage.
The next place it enters is the stomach this is a temporary store, mixes the contents up and also is the site for a bit of digestion.
Enzymes are sensitive to temperature and pH, these must be at an optimum level so they work best. Below is a digram of the human gut wall, on the right are labelled the different layers that exist. The first actual layer is the mucosa, it has a layer of epithelium, made of epithelial cells, which have projections called villi.
Below this is a muscle layer, known scientifically as the muscularis externa, it is reponsible for peristalsis which moves food through the digestive tract. In the diagram you should also notice the capillaries, part of the blood network which takes absorbed food away. By the time everything reaches here, the food has been digested into small enough particles that it can pass through the alimentary tract lining and be absorbed into the blood. The food products pass into the blood stream through villi: these are small foldings of the small intestine that cover on its internal surface.
The villi on their own increase the surface area, but the cells which make up the surface of the villus have their own small projections called microvilli (see diagram) these further increase the surface area which means that the digestion products can be absorbed more quickly. The villus has a supply of blood vessels this means substances absorbed can be transported to where they are needed more directly. Triglycerides are a type of lipid; here you will learn how the body breaks down this molecule. Digestion begins in the duodenum where bile enters from the liver, bile salts make the big blobs of fat into small micelle droplets which massively increases the surface area and makes digestion much easier.
Also in the duodenum, pancreatic lipase this breaks the triglyceride into fatty acid and glycerol.
These resynthesised lipids make proteins called chylomicrons, these enter the lacteals and travel through the lymphatic system, making it milky. Firstly, dismantle the human torso model in the science laboratory and describe what you know about each part of the alimentary canal and associated glands and organs. Next, match the skulls (noting the teeth structure and position of eye sockets) with the corresponding herbivore, omnivore and carnivore digestive systems.
This entry was posted in Functioning Organisms, Unit 1 Biology and tagged digestion, digestive_system on March 26, 2015 by brittgow. Obtaining and transporting nutrients is a vital function for all multicellular organisms and different species have evolved some interesting ways of gaining, storing and digesting their nutrients. Good information about different types of digestive systems from a UK Veterinary site, Comparative Digestion.
This entry was posted in Functioning Organisms and tagged bacteria, digestion, fermentation, foregut, hindgut, nutrition on April 30, 2011 by brittgow.
This entry was posted in Functioning Organisms and tagged digestion, microvilli, viil on April 13, 2010 by brittgow. This week we started the study of how organisms obtain their nutrients by looking at the mammalian digestive system. This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged carnivore, digestion, herbivore, nutrition on April 12, 2010 by brittgow.
They are not used up in the reaction – only a small amount of enzyme is needed for each reaction. They are very specific to their substrate and are often named according to the chemicals they work on. This entry was posted in Functioning Organisms and tagged digestion, enzymes, podcast, proteins on May 2, 2009 by brittgow.
Today we discussed the digestive systems of other animals, including flatworms, earthworms, cockroaches and birds. This entry was posted in Functioning Organisms and tagged body_systems, digestion on April 22, 2009 by brittgow. Today we are looking at the different digestive systems of mammals and investigating the relationship between diet, nutritional requirements and the structure and function of digestive systems. This entry was posted in Functioning Organisms and tagged carnivores, diet, digestion, herbivores on April 21, 2009 by brittgow. Dietary lipids are triglycerides, phospholipids, steroids, especially cholesterol and cholesterol esters, fat-soluble vitamins, namely, vitamin A, D, E and K, and carotenoids. Lipids may be solid or liquid at room temperature and are referred to as fats and oils, respectively. Phospholipids, the main constituents of biological membranes, consist of one glycerol molecule esterified with two fatty acids at the sn-1 and sn-2 positions, and a phosphoric acid at the sn-3 position.
Cholesterol and its esters, together with small amounts of steroid hormones, are found only in animal products, unlike the lipids seen up to now which are also found in plant products. A variety of plant stanols and sterols, in particular the ?-sitosterol (that is not absorbed under physiological conditions), are also included among dietary steroids. Despite scientific societies recommend a lipid intake (basically triacylglycerols) not exceeding 30% of the daily caloric intake, in Western diet, fats and oils provide between 30 to 45% of the daily caloric intake. Hydrophobicity, one of the distinctive properties of many dietary lipids, that makes triglycerides excellent molecules for energy storage, creates problems when such molecules are digested in the gastrointestinal tract, absorbed in the small intestine, and finally transported in the circulation after absorption or mobilization from body stores.
Indeed, lipids such as triglycerides with long chain fatty acids, and cholesterol and fat-soluble vitamin esters are extremely hydrophobic, and aggregate into large droplets in the stomach and small intestine. Lipid digestion begins in the mouth, continues in the stomach, and ends in the small intestine.
Other enzymes involved in lipid digestion are cholesterol esterase and phospholipases A1 and A2. The enzyme is produced and secreted by serous lingual glands, also called von Ebner’s glands.
It is stable in an acid environment and therefore remains active in the stomach, and also in the small intestine in the case where there is no proper pancreatic secretion of bicarbonate.


The reaction catalyzed by the enzyme releases a single fatty acid, preferably a short-chain or medium-chain fatty acid, and a 1,2-diacylglycerol, which is then hydrolyzed in the duodenum. Note: short-chain fatty acids are mainly esterified in sn-3 position of the triacylglycerol. As the tongue is sensitive to the taste of free fatty acids, especially polyunsaturated ones, rather than of triglycerides, lingual lipase activity could play a role in detecting fatty foods as a source of energy, and therefore influence food choices. Finally, the release of short-chain and medium-chain fatty acids and diacylglycerols is important also because they are amphipathic molecules, that is, they have an hydrophilic region, which interacts with the surrounding aqueous phase, and a hydrophobic region, which is orientated towards the core of the lipid droplets.
The enzyme preferentially catalyzes the hydrolysis of triglycerides with short-chain and medium-chain fatty acids, but may also hydrolyze long-chain fatty acids. Like lingual lipase, it is particularly active on triglyceride of milk, also of breast milk, which are rich in short-chain and medium-chain fatty acids.
The enzyme can account for 10 to 30% of triacylglycerol hydrolysis occurring in the gastrointestinal tract, and up to 50% in breast-fed infants. The chyme, containing a lipid emulsion made up of droplets of diameter less than 0.5 mm, enters the upper portion of the small intestine, the duodenum, where the hydrolysis of triglycerides continues. In the duodenum, the chyme is mixed with bile, whose release by the gallbladder is stimulated by cholecystokinin, hormone secreted by cells of the mucosa of the duodenum and jejunum in response to the ingestion of a meal, particularly if high in fat.
In particular, salts of cholic acid, which contain three hydroxyl groups, are better emulsifiers than salts of deoxycholic acid, which instead contain only two hydroxyl groups.
Note: the gallbladder secretes about 30 g of bile salts each day, together with phospholipids and cholesterol. The mechanism of peristalsis and the surfactants seen so far (free fatty acids, acylglycerols, phospholipids, and bile salts) ensure the formation of microscopic micelles,  which further increase the available surface areas for hydrolytic enzyme activities. It should be underlined that triacylglycerols with short-chain and medium-chain fatty acids can be both hydrolyzed and absorbed in the absence of bile salts, although their presence increases the absorption. Cholecystokinin also stimulates the exocrine pancreas to secrete a pancreatic juice containing, among other molecules, pancreatic lipase.
Like phospholipase A2 (see below), it is primarily active on cholesterol esters incorporated into bile salt micelles.
As previously seen,  most of the phospholipids in the intestinal lumen are of biliary origin, and only a small fraction derives from diet. In pancreatic juice, it is present phospholipase A1 as well, which removes the fatty acid at the sn-1 position of the phospholipid. In the intestinal mucosa, there seems to be a third, modest, phospholipase activity, thanks to an intrinsic membrane enzyme.
The digestion of phospholipids can ends with the formation of a free fatty acid and a lysophospholipid or can be complete. This premium supplement contains a comprehensive mixture of different types of enzymes to help digest all components of your diet. OPTIMIZES DIGESTION - Of fats, carbs, proteins, dairy, and other difficult-to-digest food substances. The digestive processes are completed in the intestinal lumen, where large emulsions of fat globules are mixed with bile salts (BS) and pancreatic juice containing lipid digestive enzymes to form an aqueous suspension of small fatty droplets to maximize exposure to the pancreatic lipases for lipid hydrolysis.
The story of how the Australians Robin Warren and Barry Marshall made the discovery and struggled to convince the scientific and medical community is well worth telling. Describe the diet of each organism, explaining your reasoning in terms of teeth structure, size of stomach and length of intestines, any enlarged organs and corresponding diet.
Amongst herbivores, for example, almost all have cellulose digesting bacteria within their gut that live symbiotically, assisting with the break down of vegetation. These microbes consume glucose from cellulose but produce fatty acids that the animal can use for energy.
These tiny, finger-like projections increase the surface area of the organ to allow greater absorption of nutrients. We discussed the comparison between carnivores and herbivores in terms  of their skeletal structure, teeth and alimentary canal. Remember that mechanical digestion does not change the food chemically, it just increases the surface area to volume ratio of the food to allow the enzymes to work better. Often they grow in soil that is deficient in specific inorganic nutrients, such as nitrates and phosphoros, and can get these essential elements from the dead animals that are attracted by sweet and sticky liquids.
You will learn the meaning of the terms fermentation, hind-gut and fore-gut fermenters, ruminants, caecum and colon.
They involve soluble enzymes, substrates with different degree of solubility, and occur primarily in the stomach and small intestine. They consist of one glycerol molecule esterified to three fatty acids, mostly long chain fatty acids (16-20 carbon atoms).
In turn, the phosphate group binds a hydrophilic group, such as choline, serine or inositol, via ester bond. Both dietary and biliary cholesterol are mostly in non-esterified form, about 85-90%, the only form of cholesterol that can be absorbed in the small intestine. These droplets will then be emulsified in order to allow hydrolases to catalyze lipid digestion.
They are proteins that catalyze the partial hydrolysis of triglycerides into a mixture of free fatty acids and acylglycerols. On the contrary, it is very important for infants, in which pancreatic lipase is still immature, also advantaged by the fact that milk triglycerides are rich in short-chain and medium-chain fatty acids.
Due to the action of these surfactants, fat droplets obtain a hydrophilic surface, that is, a stable interface with the surrounding aqueous phase. This enzyme is secreted by the chief cells of the gastric mucosa, and has an optimal pH around 4, but is still quite active at less acidic pH values, 6 to 6.5. Regardless of the type of fatty acids, gastric lipase preferentially cleaves those at the sn-3 position, leading to the release of a free fatty acid and a 1,2-diacylglycerol, molecules that can act as surfactants, as previously seen.
In the bile, among the other components, there are bile salts, phospholipids, and cholesterol. Most of the bile salts and cholesterol is then reabsorbed, so that the daily fecal loss of bile salts and steroids is quite low, 0.2-1 g. The enzyme contributes substantially to hydrolysis of the triglycerides in the intestine of breast-fed infants.
Unlike pancreatic lipase, its activity is stimulated by bile salts, mainly trihydroxy salts, such as sodium taurocholate and glycocholate.
The enzyme is present in the pancreatic juice in the form of a zymogen, called prophospholipases A2, and is activated by trypsin in the intestinal lumen.


In the bile, phospholipids form micelles with cholesterol and bile salts, and in the intestinal lumen they are distributed between the lipid droplets and these micelles, with a preference for the latter. This enzyme is called phospholipase B or retinyl ester hydrolase, being active also on vitamin A esters. Contains Bromelain, Ox Bile, Pancreatin, and Papain which maximize breakdown of fats, carbohydrates, protein and more for optimum assimilation. Its potency is well tested and it is produced in a top-notch GMP facility ensuring its high quality. Digestive enzymes aid in the chemical breakdown of food into smaller, absorbable components so they can be readily absorbed and put into the bloodstream.BOOSTS NUTRIENT ABSORPTION - Greatly aids nutrient absorption. Monoacylglycerol (MAG), diacylglycerol (DAG) and free FAs that are released by lipid hydrolysis join BS, CL, lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) and fat-soluble vitamins to form mixed micelles that provide a continuous source of digested dietary products for absorption at the brush-border membranes of the enterocytes. Microbes can also be digested further along the digestive tract as they are also a source of protein. Each villus has capillaries into which the nutrients (glucose and amino acids) are absorbed and a lacteal, which absorbs lipids (fats and oils) and drains into the lymph ducts. In general, herbivores have much larger and more complex digestive systems, with fermentation chambers to allow the break down of tough cellulose and fibrous materials. Bile is actually an emulsifier (like detergents) – it breaks the lipids down into smaller globules to allow the  lipases (enzymes that act on fats and oils) to work better. The daily intake of phospholipids is low, 1-2 g; however, also biliary phospholipids pour into the small intestine, about 10-20 g per day, mostly phosphatidylcholine. There are several lipases, the most important of which is produced by the exocrine pancreas; the others are lingual lipase, gastric lipase, and breast milk lipase. Moreover, like gastric lipase (see below), it is able to penetrate into the fat globules of the milk, thereby initiating the digestive process (pancreatic lipase is not able to penetrate into these fat globules). This, together with the churning action of the stomach, leads to the formation of an emulsion of droplets, which decrease in size. Therefore, it probably remains active even in the upper duodenum, where the pH is between 6 and 7. It catalyzes the cleavage of fatty acids, typically with 10 or more carbon atoms, primarily in sn-1 and sn-3 positions of the glycerol backbone. It catalyzes specifically the cleavage of the fatty acid at the sn-2 position of the phospholipids, whereas it has a broad specificity with respect to both the length of the carbon chain of the target fatty acid and the polar head groups of the phospholipids.
Ultimate Digestive Enzymes unique formula breaks down foods into nutrients that your body needs to absorb. Clinical studies and top health researchers suggest that digestive enzymes are highly beneficial for digestive and overall health. Food properly processed by digestive enzymes allows the body to get the building blocks needed for growth and health maintenance.MANY HEALTH BENEFITS - Digestive enzymes help break down the indigestible forms of fibers or fats that cause gas or bloating.
Bile molecules have a hydrophilic end and a hydrophobic end, and thus prevent lipid droplets coalescing. These animals are less effecient at digesting their food and can sometimes be observed practising coprophagy (eating faeces).
Forgut fermentation, or rumination, is a slower digestive process, but has the advantage of providing more nutrients and wasting less energy. The relative size and structure of incisors, canine and molar teeth will indicate whether an organism is better adapted to a diet of meat or plant materials.
Carnivores have shorter and simpler digestive systems as their diet is more energy-dense and nutrient-rich than food of plant origin. So bile works mechanically rather than chemically – the product is the same chemically as the reactants. Moreover, trihydroxy salts promote its self-association into polymeric aggregates, which protect it from the action of proteases in the intestinal lumen.
In the case of phosphatidylcholine, a free fatty acid and lysophosphatidylcholine (a lysophospholipid) are the reaction products.
They are then re-esterified sequentially inside the endoplasmic reticulum by MAG acyltransferase (MGAT) and diacylglycerol acyltransferase (DGAT) to form TAG.
The absorptive cell, or microvilli, are also in the epithelium and function to absorb nutrients.
The exception may be honey-eaters, which do not require a complex system for digestion, as their food is already energy dense and in a form easily absorbed into the blood stream. Other amphipathic molecules present in food are lecithin and phospholipids, and all together, they allow to increase the surface area available for hydrolase activity. The 2-monoacylglycerol, the main form in which the monoacylglycerols are absorbed from the small intestine, can undergo an isomerization process in which the remaining fatty acid moves to carbon 1 or 3. The need for lipase to be water-soluble and to have an active site to which a hydrophobic substrate binds should be mentioned. They are amphipathic molecules, in whose planar ring structure you can identify a hydrophobic face and a hydrophilic face. However, the rate of isomerization is slower than the rate of uptake of the molecule from the small intestine. Dietary CL is acylated by acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase (ACAT) to cholesterol esters (CE). Therefore, they are able to further emulsify lipid droplets, increasing the surface area for hydrolase activity. In vitro, pancreatic lipase is inhibited by bile salts, whereas in vivo, it hydrolyzes triglycerides in a very efficient manner, due to the presence of a protein cofactor secreted by exocrine pancreas, the colipase.
This protein has no catalytic activity, is produced in inactive form, called procolipase, and is activated by trypsin in the duodenum. Lipid droplets are coated with phospholipids and bile salts, that give them a negative charge which prevents the binding of lipase, but attracts the colipase. In turn, colipase binds pancreatic lipase (lipase and colipase bind in a 1:1 molar ratio), thus anchoring the enzyme to the water-lipid interface of the lipid droplets.



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