Just a few of the many words to describe how food tastes. Notice too, that these words can also describe smells.
As you might imagine, smell and taste are often linked together. The sense of taste is also called gustation. For food to have a taste, it must be dissolved in water. There are four basic tastes: sweet, salty, sour and bitter. All other tastes come from a combination of these four basic tastes.
Actually, a fifth basic taste called "Umami" has recently been discovered.
Taste-responsive neurons of the glossopharyngeal nerve of the rat
Umami is a taste that occurs when foods with glutamate like MSG are eaten. Different parts of the tongue can detect all types of tastes. Morever, the simple tongue "taste map" that is found in many textbooks has been criticized for several reasons also here. The actual organ of taste is called the "taste bud. Receptor cells live for only 1 to 2 weeks and then are replaced by new receptor cells.
We also discuss advances in the measurement tools used to evaluate oral sensation in health and disease, which have proven essential for comparing patients with healthy individuals. These tools include refined psychophysical scaling, visualization of oral anatomy, and spatial oral sensory testing.
We believe that studying multiple aspects of function may enable differential diagnosis and more effective medical management of oral sensory complaints. More broadly, this strategy may also clarify how anatomy, genetics, and pathology interact to produce oral sensory variation.
The primary receptor organ for taste sensation is the taste bud, an onion-shaped structure that contains separate populations of cells specialized for transducing sweet, salty, sour, bitter, and umami taste cues. Taste buds are expressed throughout the mouth, but they are most commonly found in three types of papillae on the dorsal surface of the tongue.
On the anterior, mobile portion of the tongue, fungiform papillae are round, elevated, mushroom-shaped structures that are distributed unevenly across the surface, with the highest density at the tongue tip. Foliate papillae are a series of folds on the rear edges of the tongue. Circumvallate papillae are large, round structures that form an arc across the posterior tongue with a central median papilla and papillae on each side of it.
Filiform papillae, the most numerous type, serve no taste function but are involved in tactile sensation. Taste buds are also found in the throat and at the junction of the hard and soft palates [ 1 ].
Several afferent nerves carry sensory information from the mouth, each carrying a specific array of information from a specific area. The chorda tympani CT, a branch of the facial nerve cranial nerve VII, carries taste information from fungiform papillae, while the lingual branch of the trigeminal nerve cranial nerve V carries pain, tactile, and temperature information from fungiform and filiform papillae in the same region [ 2, 3 ].
Multimodal information i. Foliate papillae are innervated by the CT taste and V tactile in anterior regions and by IX multimodal in posterior regions [ 8, 9 ]. Overall, taste and oral somatosensory cues combine centrally with retronasal olfaction to produce the composite experience of flavor [e.
The CT and.