There was a new research which confirmed that the mesentery, once thought to be a series of fragmented structures, is actually a single continuous organ that connects the intestines to the rest of the abdomen.
Another proof that much remains unknown about the human body was recently revealed when some scientists discovered a new organ in the human body, which brought the total number of the present organs to 79.
The newly classified organ, which lies in plain sight and is long, is known as mesentery and it is thought to be a series of fragmented structures.
It is located in the abdominal cavity and attaches the intestine to the wall of the abdomen, adding structural integrity to the lower digestive system.
Leonardo da Vinci was one of the first people that have mentioned it, and identified it as a continuous. Because of this, medical illustrators, physicians, and surgeons for four centuries depicted the structure as more or less continuous.
However, there were findings in the 19th century which suggested that the mesentery is actually fragmented won out and this became accepted as a scientific fact.
Yet, the fact that da Vinci was right after all, has been confirmed by a new research, published in The Lancet Gastroenterology & Hepatology, as the mesentery has now been proven, without a doubt, to actually be a single continuous organ. The lead researcher and Professor of Surgery at University of Limerick’s Graduate Entry Medical School, J Calvin Coffey, back in 2012 has confirmed that the mesentery is actually a continuous structure.
In the following years when he and his research team have collected even more evidence so the mesentery should be classified as an independent organ. He said that “The anatomic description that had been laid down over 100 years of anatomy was incorrect. T
his organ is far from fragmented and complex. It is simply one continuous structure.”
The latest discovery about this organ has the power to shake up medical science. One of the best known textbooks in the world, Gray’s Anatomy, has already been updated to reflect the new research.
Some medical students, as well as researchers are already embracing the new findings, and some will now start investigating the potential role of the mesentery in the abdominal diseases as much of the organ’s function remains unknown.
Coffey said that: “Now we have established anatomy and the structure. The next step is the function.
If you understand the function you can identify abnormal function, and then you have disease.
Put them all together and you have the field of mesenteric science … the basis for a whole new area of science…This is relevant universally as it affects all of us.”
Some of the advances that are expected from the mesenteric research are less invasive surgeries, fewer complications, faster patient recovery, and lower overall costs.