Is appendix a vestigial organ?
It is believed that appendix is a vestigial organ and its removal is one of the most commonly performed surgeries. However, two research groups headed by Professor Gabrielle Belz of Melbourne's Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, and Professor Eric Vivier at the Centre d'Immunologie de Marseille-Luminy, France, believe that a healthy appendix might have the potential of saving a person’s life. They explain that the innate lymphoid cells (ILCs), which play a crucial role in protecting people with compromised immune systems from bacterial infections, protect the organ from getting infected during a bacterial attack. Hence, with the protection from infection by ILCs, appendix becomes a natural storehouse of ‘good bacteria.’ Instead of extreme treatments to repopulate microbiomes, a healthy appendix can help the body to gain a balanced microbiome.
Read more in Science Daily.