Evolutionary Adaptation of Pruney Fingers

biologylair:

You know how your fingers get all pruney and wrinkly when you’ve been in water for a while? 

According to Mark Changizi, an evolutionary neurobiologist, the wrinkles act like rain treads on tyres. They create channels that allow water to drain away as we press our fingertips on to wet surfaces. This allows the fingers to make greater contact with a wet surface, giving them a better grip.”

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You may think that this all happens because your fingers are absorbing water - think again. When nerves to fingers are severed, this unique acclimation does not occur. It’s thus most likely controlled by the nervous system.

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