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OHSU researchers reveal the science of shivering
Date:12/17/2007

r part of the brain called the preoptic area, which decides when the body should start shivering.

Shivering is one of the many automatic and subconscious regulatory body functions, often called homeostatic functions, that the brain regulates. Other examples include the adjustment of breathing rates, blood pressure, heart rate and weight regulation. Throughout the day, all of these important functions take place in the body without conscious thought. Without these important functions, humans and other animals could not survive.

This research is a fundamental science discovery that furthers our knowledge about one of the many functions that our brains are constantly monitoring, responding to and adjusting to keep us alive and healthy, explained Morrison. It is noteworthy, however, that there are conditions, such as hypothermia and hyperthermia, in which thermal sensory pathways come into play and knowledge of the brains wiring can provide important clues to locating dysfunction in patients with abnormal thermal sensation. In addition, our ability to sense and respond to temperature changes degrades as we age.


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Contact: Jim Newman
newmanj@ohsu.edu
503-494-8231
Oregon Health & Science University
Source:Eurekalert

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