SPRINGER MEDIZIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SPRINGER MEDIZIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Liver, gallbladder and pancreas, computer artwork. The largest organ seen here is the liver. Below the liver are the pancreas (pink, centre to right) and the gallbladder (brown, centre left). Part of the duodenum, the first section of the small intestine, is seen at centre to lower centre. The liver plays a vital role in metabolism, storing nutrients in forms such as glycogen, and helping to clean the blood of toxins and other waste products. It also produces bile, a liquid that is used to digest fats. The gallbladder stores and concentrates the bile, releasing it into the small intestines when needed. The pancreas secretes digestive enzymes as well as hormones, including insulin.
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