Lawrence Edward Marks PhD
Professor of Epidemiology (Environmental Health) and of Psychology
Human sensory, perceptual, and cognitive function; Psychophysics
- Mechanisms of Taste and Flavor Perception
- Interactions of Cognitive and Sensory Processes in Flavor Perception
- Multisensory Processing
- Role of Attention in Sensory Detection
Professor Marks develops quantitative, psychophysical models to account for sensory and perceptual responses to environmental stimuli. His current research is directed in particular at elucidating the mechanisms by which perceptual and cognitive systems combine information from multiple sensory modalities. Of special interest are the mechanisms of multisensory integration and interaction involved in the perception of flavors. The flavors of foods and beverages come partly from molecules that stimulate gustatory (taste) receptors on the tongue, but importantly – often most importantly – from molecules that stimulate olfactory receptors in the nose. The perception of flavor is a critical factor controlling the intake of food. And the intake of food, in turn, is critical to the energy balance of the body, a topic central to the mission of the John B. Pierce Laboratory.