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Ageing of the enteric nervous system

Saffrey, M. Jill (2004). Ageing of the enteric nervous system. Mechanisms of Ageing and Development, 125(12) pp. 899–906.

DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.mad.2004.09.003
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Abstract

The intrinsic neurones of the enteric nervous system (ENS) play a fundamental role in the regulation of gastrointestinal functions. Although much remains to be learnt about the changes that take place in intestinal nerves during ageing, evidence suggests that selective neurodegeneration may occur in the ageing ENS. Age-associated changes in intestinal innervation may contribute to the gastrointestinal disorders that increase in incidence in the elderly, such as dysphagia, gastrointestinal reflux and constipation. A number of other factors, such as immobility, co-morbidity, and side effects of therapeutic medication for other disorders however, are also likely to contribute to the aetiology of these conditions. An important finding in rodents is that the neuronal losses that take place in the ENS during ageing may be prevented by calorie restriction; an indication that diet may influence gastrointestinal ageing. Thus, it is of importance to understand not only how the ENS changes during ‘normal’ ageing, but also how external factors contribute to these changes. Here, current knowledge of how intestinal innervation is affected during normal ageing and how these changes may impact upon gastrointestinal physiology are reviewed.

Item Type: Journal Article
Copyright Holders: 2004 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
ISSN: 0047-6374
Keywords: ageing; aetiology; innervation
Academic Unit/Department: Science > Life, Health and Chemical Sciences
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Biomedical Research Network (BRN)
Item ID: 3584
Depositing User: Jill Saffrey
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2006
Last Modified: 07 Mar 2014 13:48
URI: http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/3584
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