alimentary canal, gut, enteric canal, enteron
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alimentary canal, gut, enteric canal, enteronor
gastrointestinal tractthe tubular passage that extends from MOUTH to ANUS. It has several distinct functions:
- ingestion of food via the mouth, utilizing teeth and tongue;
- DIGESTION of food beginning in the mouth and continuing in the STOMACH and SMALL INTESTINE;
- ABSORPTION of nutrients in soluble form, occurring mainly in the small intestine, with water being taken in via the large INTESTINE;
- elimination of faecal material via the anus, the faecal material containing a mixture of undigested food and excreted material such as BILE SALTS. See DIGESTIVE SYSTEM.
Collins Dictionary of Biology, 3rd ed. © W. G. Hale, V. A. Saunders, J. P. Margham 2005