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Latest Sense Stories

2012-03-22 09:36:29

People born without a sense of smell experience higher social insecurity and increased risk for depression, according to a study published Mar. 21 in the open access journal PLoS ONE. The authors of the study, led by Ilona Croy of the University of Dresden Medical School in Germany, investigated 32 individuals born without a sense of smell, known as isolated congenital anosmia. They found that the non-smellers did not have significant deviations from the norm in terms of many daily...

Brain Handles Odors In A Different Way
2012-03-22 05:44:48

Researchers from the Stowers institute for Medical Research have traced individual odor molecules in the brain to create a new model of how our sense of smell works. While once thought to cluster related smells, researchers have know discovered that the brain reacts to smells in a broader sense. Previous research has shown that the brain handles the senses in a very orderly way. Things that we touch were thought to be mapped together in the somatosensory cortex, things that we heard...

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2012-03-14 10:32:54

How are 100 billion cells created, each with specific duties? The human brain is evidence that nature can achieve this. Researchers at Linköping University in Sweden have now taken a step closer to solving this mystery. "Knowledge about the mechanisms that diversify neurons and keep them diverse is necessary in order to cultivate and replace nerve cells in the future," says Mattias Alenius, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience, who has published his research breakthrough in the...

2012-03-12 19:52:43

Animals live in surprisingly different sensory worlds Scientists from the Monell Center report that seven of 12 related mammalian species have lost the sense of sweet taste. As each of the sweet-blind species eats only meat, the findings demonstrate that a liking for sweets is frequently lost during the evolution of diet specialization. Previous research from the Monell team had revealed the remarkable finding that both domestic and wild cats are unable to taste sweet compounds due to...

2012-03-12 15:00:34

University of Rhode Island marine biologist Jacqueline Webb gets an occasional strange look when she brings fish to the Orthopedics Research Lab at Rhode Island Hospital. While the facility's microCT scanner is typically used to study bone density and diseases like osteoporosis, it is also providing new insights into the skull structure and sensory systems of fish. A professor of biological sciences and director of the marine biology program at URI, Webb studies the lateral line system, a...

2012-02-29 12:41:31

Activating the visual cortex improves our sense of smell A new study reveals for the first time that activating the brain's visual cortex with a small amount of electrical stimulation actually improves our sense of smell. The finding published in the Journal of Neuroscience by researchers at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital - The Neuro, McGill University and the Monell Chemical Senses Center, Philadelphia, revises our understanding of the complex biology of the senses in...

2011-12-22 15:33:07

Compared to our other senses, scientists don't know much about how our skin is wired for the sensation of touch. Now, research reported in the December 23rd issue of the journal Cell, a Cell Press publication, provides the first picture of how specialized neurons feel light touches, like a brush of movement or a vibration, are organized in hairy skin. Looking at these neurons in the hairy skin of mice, the researchers observed remarkably orderly patterns, suggesting that each type of hair...

2011-12-15 16:26:29

A discovery in fruit flies may be able to tell us more about how animals, including humans, sense potentially dangerous discomforts. Researchers at Duke University Medical Center uncovered naturally occurring variations of a gene named TRPA1 that is important for the function of pain-sensing neurons throughout the animal kingdom. The gene makes an ion channel, which floods sensory neurons with calcium ions when the fly is near a heat source, causing fruit fly larvae to respond with a...

2011-12-10 02:00:24

People with a certain form of inherited hearing loss have increased sensitivity to low frequency vibration, according to a study by Professor Thomas Jentsch of the Leibniz-Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP)/Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC) Berlin-Buch and Professor Gary Lewin (MDC), conducted in cooperation with clinicians from Madrid, Spain and Nijmegen, the Netherlands. The research findings, which were published in Nature Neuroscience...

2011-12-09 16:24:38

Our senses of sight and hearing work closely together, perhaps more than people realize, a new UCLA psychology study shows. "If we think of the perceptual system as a democracy where each sense is like a person casting a vote and all votes are counted to reach a decision – although not all votes are counted equally – what our study shows is that the voters talk to one another and influence one another even before each casts a vote," said Ladan Shams, a UCLA associate professor...


Word of the Day
blee
  • Color; hue; complexion.
This word is Middle English in origin.
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