The liver is an organ of the greatest importance in the body economy. This is readily seen from its considerable size (being the largest gland in the organism) and also from the fact that the entire amount of blood leaving the digestive apparatus has first to go through this organ (portal vein). It supervises all the material entering the blood stream through the digestive tract, and regulates the amounts of the various substances necessary for the maintenance of well being. Too great quantities are not permitted to enter the circulation at once. Thus, for instance, sugar is held back in the liver and stored up as glycogen. Fats, if taken in liberal amounts, are kept back in the liver until such a time as there is a demand for this substance in the blood. Proteins, likewise, are partly retained and partly worked up into amino-acids and urea. The liver also
EINHORN M. THE MORE PRACTICAL FUNCTIONAL TESTS OF THE LIVER. JAMA. 1923;81(18):1494–1496. doi:10.1001/jama.1923.02650180012005
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