Scientists at the Netherlands Cancer Institute have discovered a set of salivary glands deep in the upper part of the throat and have named them ‘Tubarial salivary glands’.
Tubarial Salivary Glands produce the salive required for mastication, swallowing, digestion, tasting and dental hygiene. The scientists assumes the physiological function of the tubarial glands is the moistening and lubrication of the nasopharynx and oropharynx.
Scientists in the Netherlands have unknowingly discovered a new organ in the throat of humans. These scientists were doing study on prostate cancer when they got this new organ. researchers at Netherland Cancer Institute have found two salivary glands in the upper part of the throat called the tuberculosis salivary gland.
The scientists have confirmed it by considering 100 patients for studies, and it indicates that the discovery will help in the treatment of cancer, which was published in Radiotherapy and Oncology.
Before this, scientists only knew about three salivary glands in the human body, which are under the tongue, under the jaw and behind the jaw. Until now it was believed that there was nothing in the posterior part of the nose called nasopharynx.
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The study claimed that “These glands are 1.5 inches and are on top of a section of cartilage called Torus Tubarius. Researchers say that perhaps their job will be to lubricate the upper part of the throat behind the nose and mouth.”
Scientists at the Cancer Institute of Amsterdam, Netherlands were testing a scan called PSMA PET-CT designed to test prostate cancer. During this time, the doctors inject a radioactive tracer into the patient’s body. The new organ was detected only because of the radioactive tracer.
Researchers believe that their discovery is crucially good news for several cancer patients with head and neck cancers. Patients with head and neck cancers and tumours in the tongue or the throat are treated with radiation therapy that can damage the new salivary glands, whose location was not prior known.
A study co-author and Netherlands Cancer Institute radiation oncologist Wouter Vogel said, “Beyond those, perhaps a thousand microscopic salivary glands are scattered throughout the mucosal tissue of the throat and mouth. So, imagine our surprise when we found these.”
Vogel also added, “Our next study will be about to find out how we can best spare these new tubarial galnds and in which patients. and if we found it, it will lessen the side effects of cancer patients and will benefit the quality of life of they after post treatment.