Basic Taste Stimuli Elicit Unique Responses in Facial Skin Blood Flow

Graduate School of Human-Environment Studies, Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan.
PLoS ONE (Impact Factor: 3.23). 12/2011; 6(12):e28236. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0028236
Source: PubMed


Facial expression changes characteristically with the emotions induced by basic tastes in humans. We tested the hypothesis that the five basic tastes also elicit unique responses in facial skin blood flow. Facial skin blood flow was measured using laser speckle flowgraphy in 16 healthy subjects before and during the application of basic taste stimuli in the oral cavity for 20 s. The skin blood flow in the eyelid increased in response to sweet and umami taste stimuli, while that in the nose decreased in response to a bitter stimulus. There was a significant correlation between the subjective hedonic scores accompanying these taste stimuli and the above changes in skin blood flow. These results demonstrate that sweet, umami, and bitter tastes induce unique changes in facial skin blood flow that reflect subjective hedonic scores.

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Available from: Hideaki Kashima
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    • "We reported previously that basic tastes elicit characteristic responses in the skin blood flow (SkBF) in the face according to the hedonic valence (pleasant or unpleasant) and the taste itself (Kashima and Hayashi 2011). When a bitter taste stimulus was applied in the oral cavity, SkBF in the nose decreased in association with the unpleasantness of the taste, whereas when sweet and umami taste stimuli were applied, SkBF in the eyelid increased in association with the pleasantness of the taste. "
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    • "A 1-ml volume can adequately stimulate the surface of the oral cavity. We previously found that this volume gave subjects taste stimuli enough to elicit SkBF responses (Kashima and Hayashi, 2011). "
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