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Wednesday, 29 May 2013

The brain in the heart & The Heart is an endocrine gland !



Does your heart can really influence your decisions ?
Where is our emotions really located in our bodies ?
Does the heart have endocrine activity and can release hormones ?
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The brain in the heart:
After extensive research, Armour (1994) introduced the concept of functional ‘heart brain’. His work revealed that the heart has a complex intrinsic nervous system that is sufficiently sophisticated to qualify as a ‘little brain’ in its own right. The heart’s brain is an intricate network of several types of neurons, neurotransmitters, proteins and support cells similar to those found in the brain proper. Its elaborate circuitry enables it to act independently of the cranial brain – to learn, remember, and even feel and sense. The heart’s nervous system contains around 40,000 neurons, called sensory neurites (Armour, 1991). Information from the heart - including feeling sensations - is sent to the brain through several afferents. These afferent nerve pathways enter the brain at the area of the medulla, and cascade up into the higher centres of the brain, where they may influence perception, decision making and other cognitive processes (Armour, 2004). Thus, it was revealed that the heart has its own intrinsic nervous system that operates and processes information independently of the brain or nervous system. This is what allows a heart transplant to work. Normally, the heart communicates with the brain via nerve fibres running through the vagus nerve and the spinal column. In a heart transplant, these nerve connections do not reconnect for an extended period of time; in the meantime, the transplanted heart is able to function in its new host only through the capacity of its intact, intrinsic nervous system (Murphy, et al, 2000)
http://florida.schools6.com/The-Heart,-Mind-and-Spirit---Royal-College-of-Psychiatrists-download-w7323.pdf

The Heart is an endocrine gland !
For many years, it was known that distension of the atria of the heart enhanced sodium and water excretion. The distension of the atria was thought to cause a diuresis through a neural reflex mechanism. It is now clear that a peptide is secreted from the heart into the blood to cause a diuresis by the kidney. This peptide called atrial natriuretic factor or ANF (also auriculin, atriopeptin, atrin) fulfills the requirements for a hormone.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2279695/

H.M

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