Lab Report

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Lab Report

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Lab Report


All animals rely on senses of taste and smell to find acceptable food for survival. Chemoreceptors are found in the taste buds on the tongue in humans (Arms & Camp, 1995), for example, for tasting food. Studies of sensory physiology have often used insects as experimental subjects because insects can be manipulated with ease and because their sensory-response system is relatively simple (E. Williams, pers. comm.).

Flies taste food by walking on it (Dethier, 1963). Hollow hairs around the proboscis and tarsi contain receptor neurons that can distinguish among water, salts, and sugars, and flies can distinguish among different sugars (Dethier, 1976). In this experiment we tested the ability of the blowfly Sarcophaga bullata to taste different sugars and a sugar substitute, saccharin. Because sucrose is so sweet to people, I expected the flies to taste lower concentrations of sucrose than they would of maltose and glucose. Because saccharin is also sweet tasting to people, I expected the flies to respond positively to it as well. The aim of this investigation was to assess the influence of visual cues on taste perception. An experiment using a repeated measures design was carried out.


Vision provides the best case for the claim that humans perceive objects, and vision has been the focus of debates about object perception in philosophy and cognitive science. Perhaps surprisingly, skepticism about object perception until recently has been prevalent. If automatic sensory processes with no access to such information drive perceptual systems in a bottom-up manner, perception cannot parse a scene into such objects. In addition, what makes something the kind of object it is often depends not upon visible features such as color and shape, but upon properties that are hidden from view or imperceptible.

Nothing visible differentiates a fruit, a wax fruit, and an autostereoscopic image of a fruit. Vision, furthermore, seems unequipped to grasp the complex survival conditions and modal properties required to individuate ordinary objects that persist and change. A thing's parts might be replaced, or it might be completely disassembled and reassembled. One object might split into two, and bits of different things might fuse.


Taste is one of the five senses, affected by the contact of soluble substances on the tongue. Although humans can distinguish between a wide range of flavours, the sensation of taste is actually a response to a combination of several stimuli, including texture, temperature, and smell, as well as taste. In isolation, the sense of taste can only identify four basic flavours: sweet, salt, sour and bitter, with individual taste buds particularly responsive to one of these. The 10,000 or so taste buds found in humans are distributed unevenly over the top of the tongue, creating patches sensitive to specific classes of chemicals which give the taste sensations.

Chemicals from food are dissolved in the moisture of the mouth and enter the taste buds through pores in the surface of the tongue where they come into contact with sensory ...
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