Tuesday, November 23, 2010
“Smounds”— We Detect Half Sound, Half Smell
Food smell could be related to the sounds we hear while eating.
Scientists studied the increased activity of mice's olfactory tubercle - a brain structure aiding in odor detection - when making a rattling sound. When clanking a mug, 65% of tubercle cells were activated. A tone only registered 19% activity. Scientists repeatedly sent a mix of odors and tones into tubercle cells. They noted 29% became enhanced or suppressed depending on the presence/absence of the second stimulus.