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The Structure And Form Of the Spleen

The spleen is observed to be grayish purplish in color measuring about 4.3 inches when it comes to its length. Being a small organ, it just weighs about 150 grams to 200 grams. It is specifically located between the 9th to about the 12th thoracic rib, on the left side of the body. The structure of the spleen can be comparable to that of the thymus with their respective efferent lymph vessels. The spleen plays a significant role or part in the lymphatic system and in a greater extent, in the immune system. The spleen is able to receive adequate amount of blood supply for it to be able to function very well. It is supplied by the splenic artery and the gastric artery with its needed blood supply.

The spleen is known to be derived from the mesenchymal tissue as compared to other visceral organs in the abdomen which can from the endodermal tissue. The specific origin of the spleen in the mesentery is the dorsal mesentery. Despite the fact that the spleen has a different origin, it still is able to receive its needed blood supply from the same celiac trunk just like that of the other abdominal organs.

The parts of the spleenCredit:

The Parts And Their Respective Functions

The spleen is composed of several different parts which include the red pulp and the white pulp. The two areas of the spleen are known for their respective functions. First of all, the red pulp is known to be the one responsible for the mechanical filtration of the erythrocytes or red blood cells. This will ensure that the body receives a good supply of healthy red blood cells. As you may have notice, the name is derived from its function in filtering the red blood cells. The red pulp is composed of its own parts like the sinuses, splenic cords of different reticular fibers and also the marginal zone which serves as the border of the red pulp separating it from the white pulp.

Respective functions of the parts of the spleenCredit:

On the other hand, the white pulp is known to be responsible for the humoral and also the cell-mediated pathways leading to the stimulation of the active immune response. Like the red pulp, it is also composed of several different parts primarily called nodules. These nodules are known as Malphigian corpuscles which are made up of periarteriolar lymphoid sheaths known as PALS which are responsible for the high levels of T-lymphocytes. The other part of the Malphigian corpuscles is the lymphoid follicles which are the ones responsible for high amounts of B-lymphocytes. Both parts play a significant role in the active immune response of the body.

 The Best Known Functions Of The Spleen

Best functions of the spleenCredit:

Some of the best functions of the spleen include,first, the production of tuftsin, properdin and even opsonin which can be very significant in maintenance of normal body processes. The spleen is also known for its hematopoietic role in the body specifically in the production if erythrocytes or red blood cells. The function of the spleen in erythropoiesis usually ceases till the fifth month of gestation unless you have a hematologic disorder that allows uncontrollable hematopoietic processes. But, despite the fact that the spleen’s hematopoietic function eventually ceases, it is known that it remains to be a hematopoietic organ due to its role as a major organ of the lymphatic system.

The spleen is known to be an organ that serves important functions when it comes to red blood cell production the body. It is also specialized to serve its function in the immune system. This is found on the left upper part or left upper quadrant of the abdomen. The spleen is actually responsible when it comes to taking away the old red blood cells in the body. It is known that the erythrocytes or the red blood cells normally have a life span of 120 days. After such time, new red blood cells are produced and to be able to be sure that the old cells do not mix with the blood stream, the spleen serves it function. The spleen is also responsible when it comes to storage of blood reserves that are released every time the body is under a state of shock usually when it is hemorrhagic.

The spleen is considered to be a part of the mononuclear phagocyte system which is important when it comes to providing initial response whenever there is infection or exposure of the body to potential pathogens. It serves to metabolize the hemoglobin content of the blood. In this process, the globin content is processed until it becomes the basic amino acids while the heme part is processed to bilirubin which is eventually eliminated from the body by being transported into the liver.

Immune system roleCredit:

The spleen as a significant part of the immune system plays a role in the synthesis of antibodies specifically in its white pulp. It also removes the antibody-coated bacteria that can be found together with antibody-coated blood cells through the means of the lymph node and blood circulation. The spleen is also known to store about half of the total amount of the body’s monocytes responsible for stimulating the immune response. These monocytes are known to be located on the red pulp portion of the spleen. The monocytes are transported into the specific part of the body where the tissue is injured. They eventually turn into dendritic cells and eventually into macrophages which can lead to total healing of the said injured area. The spleen is also considered to be the focus of the reticuloendothelial system. It serves to function like that of a huge lymph node which means that is plays an important role in the immune system. The dysfunction or loss of the spleen can truly predispose the body to different kinds of infection.

These details simply show that despite being a small organ, the spleen can actually serve important functions to maintain normal body processes such as fighting infections caused by bacteria. Without the spleen we would suffer from endless threats brought about by these pathogens.

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