Figure 1.

The intestine's impact on health. The gastrointestinal tract contributes to health by ensuring digestion and absorption of nutrients, minerals and fluids; by induction of mucosal and systemic tolerance; by defence of the host against infectious and other pathogens; and by signalling from the periphery to the brain. For details and references, see text 'Underlying mechanisms'.

Bischoff BMC Medicine 2011 9:24   doi:10.1186/1741-7015-9-24
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