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NeurogastronomyHow the Brain Creates Flavor and Why It Matters$
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Gordon Shepherd

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231159111

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231159111.001.0001

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Plasticity in the Human Brain

Plasticity in the Human Brain

Flavor System

Chapter:
(p.200) Chapter Twenty-Three Plasticity in the Human Brain
Source:
Neurogastronomy
Author(s):

Gordon M. Shepherd

Publisher:
Columbia University Press
DOI:10.7312/columbia/9780231159111.003.0024

This chapter discusses the plasticity of the human brain flavor system. Plasticity applies to the flavor system in two ways: the system contains regions that show a continuing renewal of its cells from stem cells; and experience changes the properties of the cells and their interactions with each other. The brain is born with its full number of nerve cells, except in four regions, where new cells arise from stem cells throughout adult life. All these regions are key players in creating flavor. These include the cells of the taste bud, receptor cells in the nose, small cells in the olfactory bulb, and the hippocampus, specifically the region called the dentate gyrus. The remainder of the chapter deals with plasticity in the taste system and in the smell system, and the central mechanisms involved in experience-dependent changes in sensitivities to smells and taste.

Keywords:   human brain flavor system, plasticity, stem cells, flavor cells, taste system, smell system

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