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Articles on Senses

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Do you have a magnetic compass in your head? Lightspring/Shutterstock.com

New evidence for a human magnetic sense that lets your brain detect the Earth’s magnetic field

Your brain's sensory talents go way beyond those traditional five senses. A team of geoscientists and neurobiologists explored how the human brain monitors and responds to magnetic fields.
The sense of smell helps us know what and where things are, like yummy food. R. Suarez.

Curious Kids: How do we smell?

The parts of the brain that get 'smell signals' from the nose also do other things, such as storing memories or provoking emotions. That is why some smells can bring back old memories.
Author Tim Edwards’ dog Tui is part of a team of canines being trained to detect lung cancer in breath and saliva samples. University of Waikato

Dogs’ sensitive noses may be the key to early detection of lung cancer

Researchers are training dogs to detect lung cancer in breath and saliva samples, with the aim of developing early-detection screening and a functional “electronic nose” for diagnosing lung cancer.
One of the signature fragrances of spring comes after the consumption of asparagus. Anton G

That distinctive springtime smell: Asparagus pee

Perhaps you've noticed something unusual in the bathroom after you consume this healthy spring vegetable. A Speed Read explains there's two parts to the stinky puzzle: production and perception.
Knismesis occurs from a light touch, like a feather touching you and can happen on the skin anywhere on the body. www.shutterstock.com

Curious Kids: Why are we ticklish?

People have wondered for years and scientists still don't know for sure.
The smell of daffodils is a treat for most people, but some cannot experience the joy because they have lost their sense of smell. Mila Supinskaya Glashchenko/Shutterstock.com

Can you pass this smell test?

Our senses of taste and smell are linked to one another in ways that experts are continuing to explore. See if you can answer some questions for which experts have discovered some surprising answers.
Plastic trash on San Francisco’s Ocean Beach. Kevin Krejci

Bait and switch: Anchovies eat plastic because it smells like prey

A new study shows that anchovies – key food for larger fish – are attracted to plastic trash because it smells like food. This suggests that toxic substances in plastic could move up through food chains.

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