2021 Medicine Nobel: Scientists Found Missing Link Between Senses & Environment
Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2021 has been jointly awarded to scientists David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian
Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2021 has been jointly awarded to scientists David Julius and Ardem Patapoutian.
The scientists from the US were recognised for their "discoveries of receptors for temperature and touch," reads the Nobel website.
Dr Julius is a professor at the University of California in San Francisco.
They were recognised for their discoveries of the "TRPV1, TRPM8 and Piezo channels." The statement reads, "these discoveries have allowed us to understand how heat, cold and mechanical force can initiate the nerve impulses that allow us to perceive and adapt to the world around us."
Dr Julius's used capsaicin, a pungent compound that is found in chilli peppers that leads to a burning sensation, to identify a sensor in the nerve endings of the skin that responds to heat.
Dr Ardem Patapoutian utilised pressure-sensitive cells to discover a novel class of sensors that respond to mechanical stimuli in the skin and internal organs.
Why is this Discovery Important?
How does your body understand the sense of heat, cold or touch? The discoveries by the two scientists makes sense of this basic understanding.
The press release says "the laureates identified critical missing links in our understanding of the complex interplay between our senses and the environment."
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