It had long being believed that the human appendix has no useful function and that it was one organ that can be discarded.
However, this is not the case today as scientists have now revealed that this organ actually has an important function.
Scientists believe that the appendix helps to store up good bacteria which the body utilises in the advent of diarrhoea or cholera infection.
Researchers from Duke University Medical Centre in North Carolina made this discovery and suggest that during a bout of dysentery or cholera the human body’s supply of goods bacteria which helps in digestion will be diminished, so the appendix which acts as a reservoir for good bacteria helps to replenish the expelled bacteria.
However, if there is an infection to the appendix according to Professor Bill Parker, it should be removed to avoid any health complications.
Other scientists like Nicholas Vardaxis, an associate professor in the Department of Medical Sciences at RMIT University are of the opinion that the findings of researchers from Duke University is important.
He suggested that in evolution the higher up on the evolutionary scale and the more omnivorous we are the smaller and less vital the appendix is.
Researchers from Duke University studied the appendices of koalas which have very long appendices and its helps in the digestion of the koalas main diet which is eucalyptus leaves.
Scientists like Professor Vardaxis are of the opinion that it’s not likely that there will be a shortening of the koala appendices anytime soon unless maybe there is an extinction to the eucalyptus leaves which is the primary diet of the koala.
He believes that the reason the human appendix shrunk is as a result of dietary changes over time. He even suggested that if the duet of koalas should change over time their appendices can shrink as well and they may even be afflicted by appendicitis which is a condition that affects the appendices of humans.