The Comings and Goings of Sensory Cells that Control Ingestive Behaviors
Emily R. Liman, Ph.D. & Melanie Maya Kaelberer, Ph.D.
Sensory cells serve as the sentinels for the chemical world, deciding what information to pass along to the brain. Drs. Liman and Kaelberer study these specialized cells within the taste system (Liman) and digestive track (Kaelberer) to understand how sensory information guides ingestive behavior. Dr. Liman’s work focuses on the receptors for sour taste, while Dr. Kaelberer will discuss synaptic transmission between vagal neurons and sensory cells of the intestine. Both laboratories use electrophysiological tools to tease apart how these unique cells accomplish the daunting task of navigating our chemical world. After all, to paraphrase Aristotle, “I perceive, therefore I am.”