Nervous System

A heat map of the receptive fields of sensory neuron receptors on a human fingertip.

New Research

Study Shows Fingerprint Ridges Play Key Role in Sense of Touch

Experiments show that our fingertips’ finely tuned sensitivity maps onto the whorled ridges of our prints

A round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) in a plastic pipe in the lab.

New Research

Some Fish Fins Are as Sensitive as a Primate's Fingertips

Experiments reveal fish fins aren't just for getting around. They could have implications for underwater robotics

Could This Brain Implant Stop Epilepsy Seizures?

A new approach, which involves an implantable device delivering neurotransmitters to the brain, proves effective in mice

Glial cells of the mouse spinal cord, 1899 Ink and pencil on paper, 5 7/8 x 7 1/8 in.

See the Founder of Modern Neuroscience's Unique Way of Looking at the Inner Workings of the Brain Through Art

Art meets science in the first U.S. traveling exhibition of Santiago Ramón y Cajal’s sketches

One of the subjects of a new study on how the human nervous system responds to tactile intensity cracks an egg with ease with the help of an experimental prosthetic device.

New Research

How Hacking Neural Networks Can Help Amputees Flawlessly Crack an Egg

By tapping into the body's nervous system, researchers could create touch-sensitive prosthetics

New Research

Unnerving Find: Cells That Control Goosebumps and Nipple Erections

A new study documents eight new types of nerve cells, including ones that control sweating and blood flow

Is this supposed to be a democracy or what? (Shown here: North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un visiting Mangyongdae Revolutionary School in 2014.)

Metaphorically Speaking, Your Nervous System is a Dictatorship

Except when it's an oligarchy. Or a democracy. Or all three.


Ask Smithsonian

Ask Smithsonian: Why Do We Get Prune Fingers?

Some researchers say that, like tire treads, our fingers and toes could get better traction in wet conditions

Stretched over a prosthetic hand, this artificial skin acts more like the real thing than anything before it.

Artificial Skin Could Help Prosthesis Wearers Feel, For Real

A new polymer with a lattice of embedded sensors is sensitive to heat, humidity and pressure

Zebrafish embryo

Art Meets Science

A Scan of a Mechanical Heart Pump Fitted in a Live Human and Other Eerily Beautiful Scientific Images

From a photo of a tick biting flesh to a closeup of a kidney stone, the 18 winners of the 2014 Wellcome Image Awards highlight objects we don't usually see

Conceptual close up image of a synapse.

Does Thinking Fast Mean You’re Thinking Smarter?

The research into the relationship between quick thinking and methodical reasoning could take some time to decipher

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