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Pancreatic juice facts for kids

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Pancreatic juice is a liquid secreted by the pancreas, which contains a variety of enzymes. The pancreas is located in the visceral region, and is a major part of the digestive system required for proper digestion and subsequent assimilation of macronutrient substances required for living.

Pancreatic juice is alkaline in nature due to the high concentration of bicarbonate ions. Bicarbonate is useful in neutralizing the acidic gastric acid, allowing for effective enzymic changes.

Pancreatic juice secretion is principally regulated by hormone secretins which are produced by the walls of the duodenum, and by the action of autonomic innervation.

The release of these hormones into the blood is stimulated by the entry of the acidic chyme into the duodenum.

The coordinated action of the forementioned hormones results in the secretion of a large volume of the pancreatic juice, which is alkaline and enzyme-rich, into duodenum.

Pancreatic secretion is an aqueous solution of bicarbonate originating from the duct cells and enzymes originating from the acinar cells. The bicarbonate assists in neutralising the low pH of the chyme coming from the stomach, while the enzymes assist in the breakdown of the proteins, lipids and carbohydrates for further processing and absorption in the intestines.

Pancreatic juice is secreted into the duodenum through duodenal papillae.

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