Tasting Temperature and Pain

Document Type


Streaming Media

Publication Date



Neuroscience, sense of taste, food selection behavior, sensory factors, temperature


Integrative Systems Neuroscience Seminar Series


The sense of taste plays an important role in guiding food selection behaviors and ingestive preferences in diverse animals, such as humans and mice. Understanding how taste works has important implications for delineating the role of sensory factors in health and disease states, including obesity.

Historically, taste has been studied as an independent sensory system, isolated from other sensory modalities. However, old and new data from perceptual to neural levels of analysis reveal taste processing in the periphery and brain depends on the interaction of taste sensations with other modalities, such as temperature.

This talk will discuss work on the confluence of taste and temperature processing in the brain, including the recent discovery of a neural circuit that supports an intersection between taste, thermal and nociceptive (pain-related) signals in the mid brain.


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