Neuroscience

Neurons that encode sweetness identified in mice

Researchers from the National Institute for Physiological Sciences in Japan have identified the neurons responsible for relaying sweet taste signals to the gustatory thalamus and cortex in mice. While the peripheral taste ...

Neuroscience

Had enough water? Brain's thirst centers make a gut check

Water bottles are everywhere these days, along with all kinds of advice about exactly how much water you should be drinking. But how does your brain actually know when you've had enough and can stop feeling thirsty? A new ...

Genetics

Gene therapy blocks peripheral nerve damage in mice

Nerve axons serve as the wiring of the nervous system, sending electrical signals that control movement and sense of touch. When axons are damaged, whether by injury or as a side effect of certain drugs, a program is triggered ...

Neuroscience

How does the brain learn by talking to itself?

Humans, like other animals, possess an enormous learning capacity that allows for the apprehension of new sensory information to master new skills or to adapt to an ever-changing environment. However, many of the mechanisms ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Discovery of novel mechanisms that cause migraines

Researchers at CNRS, Université Côte d'Azur and Inserm have demonstrated a new mechanism related to the onset of migraine. They found how a mutation that causes dysfunction in a protein which inhibits neuronal electrical ...

Genetics

Scientists identify method to study resilience to pain

Scientists at the Yale School of Medicine and Veterans Affairs Connecticut Healthcare System have successfully demonstrated that it is possible to pinpoint genes that contribute to inter-individual differences in pain.

Medical research

New study reveals the cause of sensory changes in starved state

Korean researchers have verified the correlation between animals' sensory nerve activation and behavioral changes caused by insulin secretion in a feeding state. The result provided a clue to identify the causes of unusual ...

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Sensory neuron

Sensory neurons are neurons that are activated by sensory input (vision, touch, hearing, etc.), and send projections into the central nervous system that convey sensory information to the brain or spinal cord. Unlike neurons of the central nervous system, whose inputs come from other neurons, sensory neurons are activated by physical modalities such as light, sound, temperature, chemical stimulation, etc.

In complex organisms, sensory neurons relay their information to the central nervous system or in less complex organisms, such as the hydra, directly to motor neurons and sensory neurons also transmit information (electrical impulses) to the brain, where it can be further processed and acted upon. For example, olfactory sensory neurons make synapses with neurons of the olfactory bulb, where the sense of olfaction (smell) is processed.

At the molecular level, sensory receptors located on the cell membrane of sensory neurons are responsible for the conversion of stimuli into electrical impulses. The type of receptor employed by a given sensory neuron determines the type of stimulus it will be sensitive to. For example, neurons containing mechanoreceptors are sensitive to tactile stimuli, while olfactory receptors make a cell sensitive to odors.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA