Touch receptors

Definition

Touch receptors are a subtype of sensory neuron that are located in the skin and possess specialized endings that respond to mechanical stimulation. As part of the somatosensory system, touch receptors therefore transmit information regarding tactile stimuli to the central nervous system.

Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research |

    Noxious thermal and mechanical stimuli have to be faithfully detected and avoided to ensure survival. In this study, the authors uncover a modality-specific circuit responsible specifically for mechanonociceptive behavior in Drosophila. They show that the escape response to mechanical but not thermal noxious stimuli requires multisensory integration by mechanosensory neurons and neuromodulatory feedback signaling.

    • Chun Hu
    • , Meike Petersen
    • , Nina Hoyer
    • , Bettina Spitzweck
    • , Federico Tenedini
    • , Denan Wang
    • , Alisa Gruschka
    • , Lara S Burchardt
    • , Emanuela Szpotowicz
    • , Michaela Schweizer
    • , Ananya R Guntur
    • , Chung-Hui Yang
    •  & Peter Soba
  • Research |

    The mechanoreceptor Piezo2 is required for both the Hering–Breuer inflation reflex in adult mice and the inflation of the lungs of newborn mice.

    • Keiko Nonomura
    • , Seung-Hyun Woo
    • , Rui B. Chang
    • , Astrid Gillich
    • , Zhaozhu Qiu
    • , Allain G. Francisco
    • , Sanjeev S. Ranade
    • , Stephen D. Liberles
    •  & Ardem Patapoutian
    Nature 541, 176–181
  • Research |

    The authors developed small-molecule inhibitors of STOML3 oligomerization, a membrane protein that interacts with mechanosensitive ion channels, such as Piezo2. One of these molecules was effective in silencing touch receptors and reversed touch-evoked pain associated with nerve injury or diabetic neuropathy.

    • Christiane Wetzel
    • , Simone Pifferi
    • , Cristina Picci
    • , Caglar Gök
    • , Diana Hoffmann
    • , Kiran K Bali
    • , André Lampe
    • , Liudmila Lapatsina
    • , Raluca Fleischer
    • , Ewan St John Smith
    • , Valérie Bégay
    • , Mirko Moroni
    • , Luc Estebanez
    • , Johannes Kühnemund
    • , Jan Walcher
    • , Edgar Specker
    • , Martin Neuenschwander
    • , Jens Peter von Kries
    • , Volker Haucke
    • , Rohini Kuner
    • , James F A Poulet
    • , Jan Schmoranzer
    • , Kate Poole
    •  & Gary R Lewin
    Nature Neuroscience 20, 209–218
  • Research | | open

    How different sensory modalities interact to control feeding is poorly understood. Here, authors show that in Drosophila, activation of labellar mechanosensory neurons causes inhibition of sweet-sensing gustatory receptor neurons, as a result, Drosophila prefer soft food at the expense of sweetness.

    • Yong Taek Jeong
    • , Soo Min Oh
    • , Jaewon Shim
    • , Jeong Taeg Seo
    • , Jae Young Kwon
    •  & Seok Jun Moon

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