Overview of chemesthesis with a look to the future

E. Carstens

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


Many of chemosensitive molecular receptors are members of the family of thermosensitive transient receptor potential (TRP) ion channels such as TRPV1, TRPA1, TRPV3, TRPV4, and TRPM8. Thermosensitive TRP channels thus provide a satisfactory explanation for the thermal nature of chemesthetic sensory qualities, such as the cool sensation elicited by menthol or the burn elicited by capsaicin. Other chemesthetic sensations such as itch or tingle involve additional types of molecular receptors and ion channels. This chapter provides an update on chemesthesis and the underlying neural mechanisms, with an emphasis on open questions and potential future approaches to address them. Oral, ocular, and nasal chemesthesis is mediated by nerve fibers traveling in the corresponding branch of the trigeminal nerve, with cell bodies located in the trigeminal ganglion. Chemesthetic sensations play an important role in food and beverage flavor and consumer acceptance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationChemesthesis
Subtitle of host publicationChemical Touch in Food and Eating
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781118951620
ISBN (Print)9781118951736
StatePublished - Jan 15 2016


  • Chemesthesis
  • Itch
  • Taste
  • Tingle
  • TRPA1
  • TRPM8
  • TRPV1
  • TRPV3
  • TRPV4

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)


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