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 For a long time, scientists thought that our fingers wrinkled underwater because of osmosis — meaning the skin’s cells absorbed water, causing our fingertips to shrivel up. But new research suggests another explanation for why our digits get pruney when wet: The wrinkles help us to better grip objects underwater, in much the same way tire treads help cars stay on the road.

Scientists were tipped off recently when they discovered that severed fingers didn’t wrinkle underwater. This suggested the wrinkling mechanism was controlled by the nervous system, and was therefore some kind of evolutionary response.

Source: http://www.theweek.com

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