Medindia
Advertisement

Research Reveals Why Your Nose can be a Pathfinder

by Kathy Jones on April 17, 2014 at 7:14 PM
Font : A-A+

 Research Reveals Why Your Nose can be a Pathfinder

Research has indicated that waves in your brain make smells stick to your memories and inner maps.

When I was a child I used to sit in my grandfather's workshop, playing with wood shavings. Freshly shaven wood has a distinct smell of childhood happiness, and whenever I get a whiff of that scent my brain immediately conjures up images of my grandfather at his working bench, the heat from the fireplace and the dog next to it.

Advertisement

Researchers at the Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience have recently discovered the process behind this phenomenon. The brain, it turns out, connects smells to memories through an associative process where neural networks are linked through synchronised brain waves of 20-40 Hz. The results are published in the latest edition of Nature.- We all know that smell is connected to memories, Kei Igarashi, lead author, explains.- We know that neurons in different brain regions need to oscillate in synchrony for these regions to speak effectively to each other. Still, the relationship between interregional coupling and formation of memory traces has remained poorly understood. So we designed a task to investigate how odour-place representation evolved in the entorhinal and hippocampal region, to figure out whether learning depends on coupling of oscillatory networks.Smell guides the way in mazeThe researchers designed a maze for rats, where a rat would see a hole to poke its nose into. When poking into the hole, the rat was presented with one of two alternative smells. One smell told the rat that food would be found in the left food cup behind the rat.

The other smell told it that there was food in the right cup. The rat would soon learn which smell would lead to a reward where. After three weeks of training, the rats chose correctly on more than 85% of the trials. In order to see what happened inside the brain during acquisition, 16 electrode pairs were inserted in the hippocampus and in different areas of the entorhinal cortex.



Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Sedentary Behavior Precipitates Night-Time Hot Flashes
Gonorrhea
World Alzheimer's Day 2021 - 'Know Dementia, Know Alzheimer's
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Nosebleed Septoplasty Broken Nose (Nasal Fracture) 

Recommended Reading
Brain Exercises to Improve Memory
An active brain can certainly help in improving memory by strengthening the connections between ......
Brain Food
It is a myth that the brain quits generating new cells once you reach adulthood. They are ......
Head Injury
Head injury or traumatic brain injury is a leading cause of disability among children and young ......
Brilliant Human Brain - Animation
The most amazing and complex organ in the entire universe, the human brain continues to remain an .....
Broken Nose (Nasal Fracture)
Nasal fracture is a break in the bones and/or the cartilages of the nose. They may be accompanied by...
Nosebleed
Hemorrhage from the nose is known as epistaxis or nose bleeds. Epitaxis (Nose bleeds) may be a sympt...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use