News: Scientists in the Netherlands have discovered a potential new organ in the human throat named “tubarial salivary glands”.
- Tubarial Salivary Glands: It is about 3.9 centimeters in length on average and is located over a piece of cartilage called the torus tubarius,the structure that supports the entrance of the auditory tube.
- Function: Researchers suspect that the glands probably lubricate and moisten the upper throat behind the nose and mouth.
- Significance: The discovery is potentially good news for some cancer patients with head and neck cancers as radiation oncologists can circumvent these areas and protect them from the side effects of radiation.
- Salivary Glands: It has three pairs of major glands(parotid, submandibular and sublingual) and over 1,000 minor glands that are spread throughout the mucosa.These glands produce saliva necessary for swallowing, digestion, tasting, mastication and dental hygiene.