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Blood brain barrier

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BLOOD BRAIN BARRIER ANATOMY

The blood brain barrier is a highly sophisticated structural design of the human body which determines which fluids are permitted in and near the brain and which would prove harmful. Capillaries which surround the connective tissue and neuroglia known as astrocytes “stand guard” and select the substances which are permissible.

Glucose, water, lipid soluble compounds, carbon dioxide, and oxygen pass through the blood brain barrier without question. Inorganic compounds may pass but will be permitted more slowly and more hesitantly. The concentration of ions within the brain needs to vary from the concentration within the bloodstream. Antibiotics, most toxins, proteins, lipids, urea, insulin, and creatine are prohibited from passing through the barrier.

BLOOD BRAIN BARRIER FUNCTIONS

The blood brain barrier is not a complete barrier, as small portion of the brain are devoid of this barrier. This is to allow the brain to monitor and respond to certain normal functions such as the rise and fall of glucose levels in the blood. The blood brain barrier creates a physiological challenge when medicating brain diseases and neurological disorders.

BLOOD BRAIN BARRIER DIAGRAM

Blood brain barrier
Image: Blood Brain Barrier

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