Cephalic phase

Initiated by the thought, sight, smell and taste of food, by conditioned reflexes, and by insulin-induced hypoglycaemia. This phase is mediated by cholinergic vagal fibres. The areas of the brain stem that relay information to the stomach are the area postrema, nucleus tractus solitarius and the dorsal motor nucleus. Acetylcholine directly stimulates parietal cells to produce acid. It also indirectly stimulates acid secretion by releasing gastrin from G cells and histamine from t o enterochromaffin-like cells in the gastric mucosa. a c

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