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From the jarring sound of a car horn to the enticing smell of a favorite meal, our senses help us navigate smoothly through day-to-day activities. Every sight, sound, taste, smell, and touch stems from a flurry of activity between brain cells. But what happens when the brain fails to process sensory information with ease? With recent advances in genetics and imaging technology, researchers hope to gain new insight into what goes wrong in disorders including eye disease, hearing loss, and persistent pain. Ongoing studies are helping researchers identify genes that underlie everything from inherited forms of deafness and eye disease to those that influence taste. Scientists are studying how to replace nerve cells that help process sight and sound in an effort to help the millions worldwide with sensory loss. Researchers are also using modern imaging tools to study perception of sensory information and how it becomes distorted in disorders such as persistent pain.


Source: Dana Foundation
Possible links between impaired hearing and loss of cognitive abilities raise the tantalizing possibility that restoring hearing could slow cognitive decline.
Source: National Science Foundation

Playing a musical instrument can do wonders for our brains. But how does it affect our hearing later on in life?

Source: Society for Neuroscience
How accurately do your eyes see the world?
Source: Society for Neuroscience

How do your eyes and brain allow you to see? Find out in this watercolor journey through the visual system.

Senses and Perception in the News

Source: The Telegraph
Date: 1 Feb 2015
Scientists saying 'ow' and being vocal does help us tolerate pain.
Source: Scientific American
Date: 13 Jan 2015
Patients with chronic pain show signs of glial activation in brain centers that modulate pain, according to results from a PET-MRI study.
Source: Nature
Date: 25 Nov 2014
Reprogrammed human and mouse cells offer way to identify new painkilling drugs.