Even after thousands of years of studying the human body, science is still far from fully understanding its complexities. Researchers found this out for themselves after they say they accidentally discovered an entirely new organ in the human body. A new study published March 27 in Scientific Reports by NYU School of Medicine reveals that layers of the body long thought to be dense, connective tissues are actually interconnected, fluid-filled compartments.
<img src="https://media.8ch.net/file_store/3a12b1abe119257813991c1edd6bfd1cb9d54c9e1c9a50a59932e42d6985ebd9.jpg" style="max-height:640px;max-width:360px;">
<span style="margin-top:15px;rgba(42,51,6,0.7);font-size:12px;">Jill Gregory/Mount Sinai Health</span>
The new organ, previously thought to be connective tissues, exists below the skin's surface, lining the digestive tract, lungs, and urinary systems. It also has been found around arteries, veins, and the fascia between muscles. The series of spaces are supported by a strong meshwork of collagen and elastin which consists of connective tissue proteins. Researchers theorized that the new organ may act like a natural shock absorber to help prevent issues, organs, muscles, and vessels operate without being damaged.
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One of the most important functions of the newly discovered organ is that it is a highway of moving fluid and researchers say this may explain why cancer is so likely to spread. The new network is the source of the lymph and drains into the lymphatic system where the vital fluid is key to the functioning of immune cells that generate inflammation. They also believe the cells that reside in the meshwork change with age and may even contribute to the wrinkling of skin, the stiffening of limbs and the progression of inflammatory diseases.
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The researchers assert that this new organ went undiscovered for so many years because of the medical field's dependence on the examination of fixed tissue on microscope slides which has been believed to be the most accurate view of biological reality. Scientists use chemicals to thinly slice the tissue and dye it before examining it under the microscope which doesn't necessarily reveal its true 3D structure.
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