Scientists Have Finally Discover the Function of the Human Appendix - RiseEarth

Scientists Have Finally Discover the Function of the Human Appendix

By James Achisa, PBS; images via ABC; h/t to Barbara Miller

For generations the appendix was thought to have no purpose. But now, researchers say they have discovered the true function of this organ, and it is anything but redundant.

Researchers now say that the appendix acts as a safe house for good bacteria.

The body uses this to essentially “reboot” the digestive system when one suffers from a bout of dysentery or cholera.

Duke University Medical Centre in North Carolina researchers say that following a severe bout of cholera or dysentery, which can purge the gut of bacteria essential for digestion, the appendix acts as a reserve for good bacteria to emerge.

In spite of the findings, Professor Bill Parker says that this does not mean we should cling onto our appendices at all costs.
“It’s very important for people to understand that if their appendix gets inflamed, just because it has a function it does not mean they should try to keep it in,” he explained.

“So it’s sort of a fun thing that we’ve found, but we don’t want it to cause any harm, we don’t want people to say, ‘oh, my appendix has a function’, so I’m not going to go to the doctor, I’m going to try to hang onto it.”
Scientists were led to the discovery by examining the appendices of koalas. Unlike the short human variety, the koala is famous for having an extremely long appendix. This aids in their diet which is almost exclusively made up of eucalyptus leaves.

Nicholas Vardaxis, an associate professor in the Department of Medical Sciences at RMIT University, says that the theory put forward by the Duke University team makes a lot of sense.
“As an idea it’s an attractive one, that perhaps it would be a nice place for these little bacteria to localize in, a little cul-de-sac away from everything else,” he weighed in.

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  1. What's outlandish? Finding the purpose of the appendix doesn't change the fact that they've had to be removed in the past. Their purpose in minuscule compared to the danger they pose when enflamed. We can re establish good bacteria through diet and supplements without this little time bomb in our body.

  2. [ Smiles ] There is no such thing as a redundant organ; everyone of them has a purpose.

  3. God has make our Body perfect and nothing is useless....
    Every organ has it's own importance as a small Appendix is also very responsible for our Immunity process...and work as a safe guard for us....!!
    Thanks for your explanation.....Sending you Blessings with Love....!!
    Dr. Sohini Shukla.