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Butt Sense: Scientists Find Brain Cells in Body's Colon

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A new study released by a team of scientists from Australia reveals that human bodies have brain cells in their butt, which makes the colon “smart.”

Lead author of the study Nick J Spencer, a neurophysiology professor at Flinders University, and his team found out that neuronal imaging done on mice showed that the firing of these butt neurons along the colon takes place in a rhythmic pattern.

The body’s “second brain” is separate from the central nervous system which is made up of the brain and spinal cord.

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Earlier it was said that neurons fire to contract the muscles around parts of the colon, which then forces waste through the last part of the digestive tract.

"This represents a major pattern of neuronal activity in the mammalian peripheral nervous system that has not previously been identified," the authors wrote.

The team also thinks that this "second brain" may have really been our first brain, as far as evolution is concerned.

"The newly identified neuronal firing pattern may represent an early feature preserved through the evolution of nervous systems. It has also been called the 'first brain' based on evidence suggesting that the ENS evolved before the CNS,” the report read.

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