When you feel cold, fearful, or emotionally excited, the hairs on your skin stand on end. The people call this phenomenon goose bumps or goose bumps, but scientifically speaking, it is - piloerection... For a long time, the cause of hair mobility isthe human body remained unknown, but, of course, scientists decided that this ability was passed on to us from our ancient ancestors. It is believed that thousands of years ago, standing on end of hair allowed people to keep warm longer and not freeze in the cold. And in the animal world, piloerection allows you to become visually larger by increasing the size of the coat and thereby scare off predators. After finding out all these facts, the scientists were sure that we no longer need goose bumps, because we at least have warm jackets. However, recently it was found that this feature of the body stimulates hair growth.
Piloerection - this is the same as "goose bumps" and goose bumps. The reflex that leads to its occurrence is called pilomotor reflex.
How do goose bumps appear?
The results of scientific work carried out by scientists fromof the American state of Massachusetts, were published in the scientific journal Cell. As part of the study, they re-examined the mechanism of the appearance of goose bumps in the hope of discovering at least one function that is useful for us at the moment. Laboratory mice were selected as experimental animals. By provoking them to get goosebumps, scientists have found that the muscles that lift the hair up are directly related to the nerves emanating from the spinal cord. By reacting to cold and other irritants, these nerves activate tiny muscles that affect hair follicles.
Scientists knew about all this for a long time, but in the course ofresearch revealed one interesting detail. It turned out that the system responsible for the appearance of goose bumps is also closely related to stem cells. They are found in many multicellular organisms and are capable of transforming into cells of various organs and tissues. With prolonged exposure to cold, this system forces the stem cells to regenerate the hair follicles from which hair grows. Based on this, the researchers concluded that goose bumps stimulate hair growth to improve protection from the cold in the future.
At this point, the new goosebumps feature wasfound only in mice. However, there are many similarities between them and humans, and this is why rodents are most often used in scientific research. So, goose bumps can play the same role in our body. Only do we need it? In fact, the results of the study only slightly revealed how goosebumps help us fight the cold. But today we have warm clothes and we don't need such abilities to a greater extent.
See also: What did the most ancient ancestor of man look like?
It would be much more interesting to know whyGoose bumps occur when listening to good music, experiencing fear, or being sexually aroused. Also, oddities with the skin occur when metal scraping against glass - why does our body react so much to such events? Maybe the creeps are somehow helping us to enjoy the pleasure better, or is it easier to cope with a little stress? Scientists still do not have exact answers to these questions - unless it is known that the released adrenaline plays a huge role in this process.
I recently wrote in detail about goose bumpscolleague Lyubov Sokovikova. In her material, she just touched on the theme of the appearance of goosebumps when listening to music and pleasant memories. One theory is that goose bumps are caused by the release of adrenaline, which is actively produced in the adrenal glands. The so-called stress hormone not only causes muscle contraction near hair follicles, but also participates in many other processes taking place inside our body. In general, if you are interested in this topic - I recommend the article Love to read.
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I also advise on a similar topic of a personread the article on whether it is possible to grow an insect larva right under your skin. It would seem that people should, on the contrary, try to prevent the larvae from entering their body. However, the scientist Pyotr Naskretsky, who devoted most of his life to studying insects, decided to voluntarily grow tiny parasites inside himself. What came of this, you can read in this material.