Scientists have recently discovered a unique nerve cell that plays a principal role in the thermodynamics of mice. These cells are what allow mice to cool off and prevents them from overheating. Scientists had previously identified parts of the brain involved in thermal activity, however they had not pinpointed what actually executes the action. By studying how this cell helps the body temperature of mice to stay healthy, many insights to the relationship between body temperature and metabolism can be offered.
Scientists tested the capabilities of this cell in many ways including giving the mice artificial fevers by injecting “heat up”molecules into the mice. One group of mice (the control group) lacked the protein(TRPM2) in the nerve cells while the other contained them. The group of mice that lacked this protein heated up 1 degree more than the group that contained the protein. Further investigation is required to determine whether these proteins affect humans in the same way that they affect mice. The results of these investigations may eventually lead to inducing hypothermia from the body as well as an effective way of internal cool down.
The article, published in ScienceNews can be found here: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/cool-nerve-cells-help-mice-beat-heat?tgt=nr
Author: Anika Halder
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