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Science. 2011 Sep 2;333(6047):1262-6. doi: 10.1126/science.1204076.

A gustotopic map of taste qualities in the mammalian brain.

Author information

1
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, New York, NY 10032, USA.

Abstract

The taste system is one of our fundamental senses, responsible for detecting and responding to sweet, bitter, umami, salty, and sour stimuli. In the tongue, the five basic tastes are mediated by separate classes of taste receptor cells each finely tuned to a single taste quality. We explored the logic of taste coding in the brain by examining how sweet, bitter, umami, and salty qualities are represented in the primary taste cortex of mice. We used in vivo two-photon calcium imaging to demonstrate topographic segregation in the functional architecture of the gustatory cortex. Each taste quality is represented in its own separate cortical field, revealing the existence of a gustotopic map in the brain. These results expose the basic logic for the central representation of taste.

PMID:
21885776
PMCID:
PMC3523322
DOI:
10.1126/science.1204076
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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