When we touch something, how do sensations from our hands get translated into perceptions by our brains? Meet two scientists who are trying to answer that question with a curious tool: rat whiskers. Just like hands are to humans, whiskers are rats’ primary sensors of touch. Analyzing how whisker sensations get processed by rats’ brains is providing a powerful model that’s helping reveal the mysteries of our own sense of touch.
This video is based on:
The Morphology of the Rat Vibrissal Array: A Model for Quantifying Spatiotemporal Patterns of Whisker-Object Contact, a paper published by Mitra Hartmann and colleagues in the online journal PLoS Computational Biology.
Psychometric Curve and Behavioral Strategies for Whisker-Based Texture Discrimination in Rats, a paper published by Daniel Feldman and colleagues in the online journal PLoS ONE.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
First five Science Bytes pilot episodes completed
August 17, 2012 — Kikim Media has completed production of five short videos telling stories from the frontiers of science.