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Abraham Vater

Abraham Vater

BornDecember 9, 1684
Wittenberg, Germany
DiedNovember 18, 1751
Alma materUniversity of Wittenberg
Known forFirst to describe hepatopancreatic ampulla

Abraham Vater (December 9, 1684 - November 18, 1751) was a German anatomist from Wittenberg. He received his doctorate in philosophy from the University of Wittenberg in 1706, and his medical degree from the University of Leipzig in 1710. He later practiced medicine in Wittenberg, becoming "professor extraordinaire" in 1719, full professor of anatomy in 1732 and professory of therapy in 1746.

Vater is primarily known for his work in anatomy, but he also published works on chemistry, botany, pharmacology and gynaecology. He was the first to describe the hepatopancreatic ampulla, which is the juncture of the pancreatic duct and the common bile duct, and is now referred to as the ampulla of Vater.

In 1719, Vater was the first to notice oval-shaped organs of concentric layers of connective tissue wrapped around nerve endings in the skin. They were between 1-4 mm long, and he called these structures papillae nervae. Apparently his research was forgotten, because in 1831 they were rediscovered by anatomist Filippo Pacini (1812-1883) while performing a dissection of a hand. Pacini was the first to describe their functionality as mechanoreceptors that are sensitive to vibration and pressure changes, and thus were to become known as Pacinian corpuscles. Today, the term Vater-Pacini corpuscles[1]is sometimes used to credit the discoveries of both men. These organs are one of several types of mechanoreceptors in the body, some others being Meissner corpuscles (tactile and touch receptors), Ruffini corpuscles (heat receptors), and Krause corpuscles (cold receptors).


  • German Wikipedia Page; Abraham Vater
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Abraham_Vater". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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