Comparative Physiology of the Vertebrate Digestive System

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Cambridge University Press, Nov 25, 2004 - Medical - 420 pages
This book is useful for anyone interested in the basic structural and functional characteristics of the digestive system and how these vary among vertebrate groups and species. It discusses all of the major aspects of nutrition, anatomy and physiology in all of the major groups of vertebrates. It contains numerous figures and tables to aid in their comparison, including many illustrations of gastrointestinal tracts of vertebrates prepared so as to allow for direct comparison. The terminology of scientific specialties and sub-specialties is defined and animals are referred to by both their common and scientific names. Relationships between digestive strategies and the diet and environment are discussed throughout the text, and brought together in a chapter on the evolution of the digestive system. The final chapter offers a brief summary of the major concepts and suggests future directions for research.

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Contents

Midgut
18
Summary
45
Edentata
62
Artiodactyla
77
Proboscidea
90
Midgut
108
Retention of particles
132
Applications of models
148
Lipids
166
Microbial fermentation and synthesis of nutrients
188
Secretion and absorption of electrolytes and water
229
Neuroendocrine control
268
Evolution of the digestive system
288
Conclusions and future directions
323
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