Developmental neurobiology and pain

Bill Browning bbrownin at
Mon Jan 8 15:15:28 EST 2001

     Perhaps nociception develops late in the gestation period.  There would
be little
evolutionary value of being able to sense pain until the fetus reaches
viability.  What
could the fetus do in response to pain that would increase is survival
     Read the article, "Nociception", by Luise Pernar in:
for a discussion of why the brain does not have nociceptors.
     It says: ... it makes evolutionary sense for the body to be so well
equipped with
nociceptors in almost all locations. The most notable exception to this
logic is the
brain. The brain itself has no nociceptors and therefore is pain
insensitive. Why is
this all-important structure not equipped with and therefore indirectly
protected by
nociceptors? Presumably, the brain is not equipped with nociceptors as an
that is strong enough to 'hurt' the brain would almost certainly be fatal.
As evolution
is ecological, the brain therefore probably came to have no nociceptors. ...
Bill B.
Célia Cruz <celiacruz at> wrote in message
news:3a524371 at
> Hi everyone!
> I'm a Ph.D student from Portugal. I am interested in nociception and also
> developmental biology. I am looking for information on how these two
> come together. When does nociception begin during embriogenesis and fetal
> life? Why is it necessary before birth? If a fetus is so protected from
> harmful stimuli, how can the organism assure that nociceptive systems are
> functioning properly? How different is nociception during fetal
> developmental and infancy from nociception during adulhood?
> I woul appreciate it a lot if anyonce can direct me to the hot questions
> the field or someone working in this area. Is there any special place
> I can look for more information?
> Thanks in advance!!!
> Célia Cruz

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