Describe the functions of the gastric secretions.
Candidates were expected to list and briefly define the role of the various substances produced and secreted by the stomach. These included the hormones gastrin and somatostatin, the enzymes pepsin, lipase and gelatinase, the electrolytes Na+, K+ and HCO3- , HCl and water, prostaglandins and mucus, and intrinsic factor. For example: HCl secreted by parietal cells to produce a very acidic environment pH 1-3.5. This optimizes proteolytic activity of pepsin, has a direct proteolytic role, aids ferric iron conversion to the more soluble ferrous ion, and is important for bactericidal activity and innate immunity. It also stimulates pancreatic and biliary secretions. Good answers divided the functions into digestive, hormonal, mucosal protection, immunity etc. Marks were not gained for mention of the secretions of other GIT organs.
Reference: Guyton and Hall 11th edition p791-799
You could probably just classify the main functions of exocrine gastric secretions into two main categories: digestive and protective. But then it seems like when the college say "describe the functions of the gastric secretions", they meant all the secretions, including the endocrine or paracrine hormones. That's probably not how the candidates would have interpreted it, which is why 60% of them failed that question.
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