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The gut is an intelligent sensory organ; impact for phytonutrients

Published: June 21, 2017
By: John B Furness 1 and David M Bravo 2. / 1 Florey Institute for Neuroscience and University of Melbourne, Australia; 2 Pancosma S.A., Geneva, Switzerland.
The gastrointestinal tract is confronted with a cornucopia of diverse chemicals, pathogens and physicochemical states that it must analyze and react to appropriately to optimize nutrition and to defend against harm. It presents the largest and most vulnerable surface to the outside world. Integrated responses to these challenges require the gut to sense its environment. This it does through a range of detection systems for specific chemical entities, pathogenic organisms and their products, and physico-chemical properties of its contents. Receptors for nutrients include taste receptors, free fatty acid receptors, peptide and phytochemical receptors, that are primarily located on enteroendocrine cells. Hormones released by enteroendocrine cells commonly act via the nervous system to optimise digestion. Pathogen detection is both through antigen presentation to T cells and through pattern recognition receptors (PRRs). Activation of PRRs triggers local tissue defence, for example, by causing release of antimicrobials from Paneth cells. Toxic chemicals, including pharmaceuticals, are sensed and then avoided, expelled or metabolised. Sensory information is communicated to four major effector systems: the enteroendocrine hormonal signalling system; the innervation of the gut, both intrinsic and extrinsic; the gut immune system; and the local tissue defence system. 
Phytochemicals are a special component of foods. They occur in low amounts, and contribute little directly to nutrition. However, they provide signals to the intestine that can have beneficial downstream effects, for example by enhancing nutrient uptake and stimulation of the gut immune system. They are thus valuable food additives that can promote gut health and improve animal productivity.
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John Furness
University of Melbourne
David Bravo
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Oprea Petru
15 de noviembre de 2020

A real course of applied digestive physiology.

Thank you for the presentation.


Oprea P

Rezaul Kabir
25 de julio de 2017

Dear Sir,
I want to know about phytogenics.

Muhammad Hassan
2 de julio de 2017
Dear Sir Please explain what is the difference between mix bacterial enteritis and disbactriosis? And which types of bacteria involve and how we can differentiate in both cases
Emmanuel Odje
BIODEVAS Laboratoires
28 de junio de 2017

Interesting article on the impact of phytonutrients in the intestinal microbiota. It is true that phytogenic products are widely used today as additives in food. They contribute little to the effectiveness of the food. They are known for their antioxidant, antibacterial, anti-parasitic activity. But there is a new approach to the use of these phytogenic products. This is the enzymatic regulation. These are messages, signals sent via interleukins, for example, to modulate, stimulate the immune system, even improve the absorption of nutrients. The Biodevas laboratory has since worked on this enzymatic regulation approach to managing, for example, the multiplication and virulence of pathogens in animal and plant production.

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