BY32 Study Guide #2 – Digestive System


1. List the parts of the alimentary canal (gastrointestinal tract).

2. List the accessory digestive organs.

3. List 5 functions of the digestive system.

4. Define chemical digestion. Define absorption.

5. Distinguish between mechanical and chemical digestion.

6. What is splanchnic circulation?

7. What are the four major histological layers of the digestive tract?

a. What are the main functions of the mucosa?

b. What are the three sublayers of the mucosa?

c. Describe the structure of the submucosa.

d. Describe the muscularis.

e. What are the differences (structural and functional) between serosa and adventitia?

f. How do these histological layers change throughout the digestive tract?

8. Discuss the role of the enteric nervous system in digestive function. How does the autonomic nervous system regulate digestive function?

a. What are the two divisions of the enteric nervous system of the alimentary canal?

b. What is the location and function of the submucosal plexus?

c. What is the location and function of the myenteric plexus?

d. How do the following digestive processes occur: mastication, deglutition, peristalsis, segmentation, defecation?

9. Describe the following abdominal membranes: serous, parietal peritoneum, visceral peritoneum, mesentery, lesser omentum, greater omentum.

a. What is contained in the peritoneal cavity?

b. What are retroperitoneal organs?

c. What are the two mesenteries of the stomach?

10. Describe the anatomy of the mouth, including tongue, hard palate, soft palate, uvula, buccal cavity, nasopharynx, teeth, salivary glands, oropharynx, glottis, epiglottis, larynogpharynx. How are the salivary glands controlled by the autonomic nervous system?

a. List the food passages between the oral cavity and the stomach.

b. What is the function of the hard palate?

c. What is the function of the soft palate?

d. Describe the position and function of the salivary glands.

e. Describe the composition of saliva.

f. What is the dental formula for permanent teeth?

g. Describe the structure of a tooth.

11. What are the three phases of the swallowing reflex and what is happening during each phase?

12. What are the special features of the esophagus that adapt it to its role in digestion?

a. What is the function of the epiglottis in swallowing?

b. What is the esophageal hiatus?

13. Describe the anatomy and functions of the following: cardiac sphincter, fundus, body, pylorus,  rugae, pyloric sphincter, gastric pits, mucous goblet cells, parental cells, chief (zymogenic) cells, enteroendocrine cells. How does the stomach protect itself from auto-digestion and the effects of hydrochloric acid?

a. Describe the autonomic innervation of the stomach.

b. Describe the structure and function of the epithelial lining of the stomach.

c. List the four types of cells in gastric pits and their products.

d. Describe the following phases in gastric juice section - cephalic phase, gastric phase, intestinal phase.

e. How is gastric motility affected by volume of food in the stomach?

f. How is gastric motility affected by the chemical composition of chyme in the duodenum?

g. How is gastric secretion controlled during the cephalic, gastric and intestinal phases?

h. Where is rennin produced? What is its function?

14. Where is secretin produced? What is its action?

15. Where is cholecystokinin produced? What is its action?

16. Describe the anatomy and functions of the following: duodenum, jejunum, ileum, villi, lacteals, intestinal crypts (of Lieberkuhn), duodenal glands, ileocecal valve, plicae circulares, brush border, Peyer’s patches.

a. What part of the small intestine receives bile and pancreatic juice?

b. What are lacteals and what is their function?

c. What is the brush border and what is its function?

d. What are the intestinal crypts and what is their function?

e. What are Peyer’s patches and what is their function?

f. What are duodenal glands and what is their function?

g. What is glucose-Na+ cotransport?

h. Distinguish between absorption of fat soluble and water soluble vitamins.

i. What are chylomicrons and what happens to them?

17. Discuss the anatomy and functions of the liver. Describe the circulation of blood into, through, and out of the liver, as well as the production of bile. What functions are served by the bile duct and hepatopancreatic sphincter?

a. What are the two sources of blood supply to the liver?

b. What is the function of bile salts?

c. What is the function of the gall bladder?

d. What are Kupffer cells and what do they do?

e. What is bilirubin – how formed? What happens to it?

18. Describe the anatomy and functions of the pancreas, as well as the pancreatic duct and hepatopancreatic sphincter.

a. List the digestive enzymes produced by the pancreas and their substrates.

b. Besides enzymes, what other digestive product is produced by the pancreas?

c. What pancreatic secretion is stimulated by CCK?

d. What pancreatic secretion is stimulated by secretin?

19. Describe the anatomy and functions of the following: cecum, appendix, ascending, transverse, descending, sigmoid colon, haustra, teniae coli, rectum, anus, internal and external anal sphincters. What is secreted by the walls of the large intestine?


20. Discuss mechanical and chemical digestion in the following:

a. mouth – salivary amylase

b. gastric digestion – HCl, pepsinogen, chymosin, gastric lipase

c. duodenal digestion – intestinal crypts (crypts of Lieberkuhn), duodenal glands (Brunner’s glands), pancreatic juices (pancreatic amylase, trypsinogen, chymotrypsinogen, carboxypeptidase, lipase, nucleases), bile

d. brush border (maltase, sucrase, lactase, peptidases, enterokinase), absorption, lacteals, micelle formation

e.large intestine – absorption, feces formation, defecation


21. Where are the following hormones made? What triggers their productions? What functions do they serve?

a. insulin

b. glucagons

c. gastrin

d. gastric inhibitory peptide (enterogastrone)

e. intestinal gastrin

f. CCK

g. secretin


22. List the enzymes, products and location of:

a. Carbohydrate digestion

b. Protein digestion

c. Fat digestion

d. Nucleic acid digestion