Agriculture
Flush-Free Fertilizer
Silk’s superpowers
Microbes at the Gas Pump
Amphibians
Bullfrogs
Toads
Tree Frogs
Animals
Pothole Repair, Insect-style
Sleep Affects a Bird's Singing
Clone Wars
Behavior
Island of Hope
A brain-boosting video game
Flower family knows its roots
Birds
Woodpecker
Pheasants
Blue Jays
Chemistry and Materials
When frog gender flips
Hair Detectives
Supergoo to the rescue
Computers
The Shape of the Internet
Galaxies far, far, far away
Electronic Paper Turns a Page
Dinosaurs and Fossils
A Really Big (but Extinct) Rodent
Dino-bite!
A Rainforest Trapped in Amber
E Learning Jamaica
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Earth
Ice Age Melting and Rising Seas
Less Mixing Can Affect Lake's Ecosystem
Ancient Heights
Environment
Missing Tigers in India
Acid Snails
Cactus Goo for Clean Water
Finding the Past
Meet your mysterious relative
Preserving Ancient Warrior Paint
Traces of Ancient Campfires
Fish
Freshwater Fish
Halibut
Lampreys
Food and Nutrition
Moving Good Fats from Fish to Mice
Making good, brown fat
Turning to Sweets, Fats to Calm the Brain
GSAT English Rules
Finding Subjects and Verbs
Order of Adjectives
Whoever vs. Whomever
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
Tarrant High overcoming the odds
42,000 students will sit for the GSAT Exam in two weeks
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
GSAT Mathematics
How to Slice a Cake Fairly
GSAT Mathematics Quiz, Teaching Math, teaching anxiety
A Sweet Advance in Candy Packing
Human Body
Don't Eat That Sandwich!
Kids now getting 'adult' disease
Taking the sting out of scorpion venom
Invertebrates
Corals
Mollusks
Bees
Mammals
Prairie Dogs
African Camels
Rodents
Parents
Raise a Lifelong Reader by Reading Aloud
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
How children learn
Physics
The Mirror Universe of Antimatter
Dreams of Floating in Space
Echoes of a Stretched Egg
Plants
Making the most of a meal
White fuzzy mold not as friendly as it looks
A Change in Leaf Color
Reptiles
Reptiles
Chameleons
Snapping Turtles
Space and Astronomy
Roving the Red Planet
Holes in Martian moon mystery
Asteroid Lost and Found
Technology and Engineering
Supersuits for Superheroes
Model Plane Flies the Atlantic
A Clean Getaway
The Parts of Speech
What is a Preposition?
What is a Noun
Pronouns
Transportation
Flying the Hyper Skies
Troubles with Hubble
Robots on the Road, Again
Weather
A Dire Shortage of Water
Science loses out when ice caps melt
Warmest Year on Record
Add your Article

The Taste of Bubbles

What does fizz taste like? In bubbly beverages like soda or champagne, tiny bubbles give the drink a lift — and have a distinct taste. Scientists have long wondered how we taste these bubbles. In a new study on mice, scientists have connected that fizzy-taste sensation to the ability to taste sourness. Scientists previously thought the taste of bubbles comes from the bubbles bursting on the tongue — but that idea may have to change, says Charles Zuker. A neuroscientist, or a scientist who studies the brain and nervous system, Zuker is now at Columbia University in New York. He and his team of researchers studied the nervous systems of mice to understand how the tongue tastes carbon dioxide, which is the gas that makes up the bubbles. In the experiment, five different groups of mice were genetically engineered to be missing one taste sensation. (“Genetically engineered” means the researchers were able to turn off the switches for certain tastes by altering the responsible genes.) The mice in one group were bred so that they could not taste sweet. In another group, the mice could not taste sour. In the other three groups, the mice could not taste umami, or salty or bitter. When the scientists gave carbon dioxide gas to the mice, the nervous systems of the rodents in four groups responded to carbon dioxide. But for mice that could not taste sour, their nervous systems did not show any sign of tasting carbon dioxide. This tipped off the researchers to the connection between sourness and bubbles. When the scientists turned off the sour taste in the mice genes, they also turned off the ability to taste carbon dioxide. The scientists then zoomed in on the sour taste. Animals like mice or human beings are able to detect different tastes by using taste buds, located near the surface of the tongue. A taste bud is a group of 50 to 150 cells called taste receptors. (Under a microscope, this bundle of cells looks a little like a big bunch of bananas.) The tips of the taste receptor cells pick up tastes in the mouth, and then send that information to the brain. When they studied the cells that detect sourness, Zuker and his colleagues found a protein, attached to the sour-sensing cells, that is crucial to the process of tasting carbon dioxide. When carbon dioxide comes into contact with this protein, the protein knocks off particles called protons. These protons, in turn, stimulate the sour cells. So when a mouse — or person — drinks a fizzy drink, there’s a one-two punch. First, the protein knocks off protons. Second, the protons stimulate the sour-sensing cells —and the brain says, “Hey! That’s a taste!” That may seem like a lot of work to get from a can of soda to a taste — but the science of the senses is anything but simple. Taste “is a very challenging system to study,” Alexander Bachmanov, a scientist at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia, told Science News. “Everything is very small but very complex.” POWER WORDS (adapted from the Yahoo! Kids Dictionary) nervous system The system of cells, tissues and organs that regulates the body's responses to internal and external stimuli. In vertebrates it consists of the brain, spinal cord, nerves, ganglia and parts of the receptor and effector organs. neuroscience Any of the sciences, such as neuroanatomy and neurobiology, that deal with the nervous system. proteins Molecules that contain carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and usually sulfur. Proteins are fundamental components of all living cells and include many substances that are necessary for the proper functioning of an organism. carbon dioxide A colorless, odorless, incombustible gas formed during respiration, combustion and organic decomposition and used in food refrigeration, carbonated beverages, inert atmospheres, fire extinguishers and aerosols.

The Taste of Bubbles
The Taste of Bubbles








Designed and Powered by HBJamaica.com™