Newborn mice use mom’s unique odor, not a pheromone, to begin breastfeeding.
Researchers recently localised and identified the most important types of nerve cells involved in forming positive and negative memories of a fruit fly. All four nerve cell types they discovered use dopamine to communicate with other nerve cells. Three of the nerve cell types assume various functions in mediating negative stimuli, while the fourth enables the fly to form positive memories.
Have you ever been disappointed by a cantaloupe from the grocery store? Too ripe? Not ripe enough? Luckily for you, researchers from the University of California, Davis might have found a way to make imperfectly ripe fruit a thing of the past. The method will be published on March 30 in the Journal of Visualized [...]
Stowers researchers present a new model for how the brain is organized to process odor information. Just like a road atlas faithfully maps real-world locations, our brain maps many aspects of our physical world: Sensory inputs from our fingers are mapped next to each other in the somatosensory cortex; the auditory system is organized by [...]
We know from experience that particular smells are almost inseparable in our minds with memories, some vague and others very specific. The smell of just-baked bread may trigger an involuntary mental journey, even if for a moment, to childhood, or to a particular day during childhood. Or it may, more diffusely, remind someone of grandma. [...]
Biologists at UC San Diego have identified the molecular mechanisms triggered by starvation in fruit flies that enhance the nervous system’s response to smell, allowing these insects and presumably vertebrates—including humans—to become more efficient and voracious foragers when hungry. Their discovery of the neural changes that control odor-driven food searches in flies, which they detail [...]