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Latest Monell Chemical Senses Center Stories

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2009-04-07 10:27:41

Women may be sniffing out biologically-relevant information from underarm sweat It may be wise to trust the female nose when it comes to body odor. According to new research from the Monell Center, it is more difficult to mask underarm odor when women are doing the smelling. "It is quite difficult to block a woman's awareness of body odor. In contrast, it seems rather easy to do so in men," said study lead author Charles J. Wysocki, PhD, a behavioral neuroscientist at Monell. The researchers...

2009-03-19 21:46:16

Children have a biological basis to like sweets, which is related to children's high growth rate, U.S. researchers said. The relationship between sweet preference and growth makes intuitive sense because when growth is rapid, caloric demands increase, geneticist Danielle Reed of the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia said in a statement. Children are programmed to like a sweet taste because it fills a biological need by pushing them towards energy sources. Reed and University of...

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2009-03-19 09:10:19

Heightened sweet preference linked to physical growth As any parent knows, children love sweet-tasting foods. Now, new research from the University of Washington and the Monell Center indicates that this heightened liking for sweetness has a biological basis and is related to children's high growth rate. "The relationship between sweet preference and growth makes intuitive sense because when growth is rapid, caloric demands increase. Children are programmed to like sweet taste because it...

2008-10-31 15:00:12

Diet may influence odor profiles but does not prevent identification of genetically determined odortypes, U.S. researchers say. In animal studies, scientists at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia found changing diet ingredients did not obscure detection of underlying odortypes. "These findings indicate that biologically-based odorprints, like fingerprints, could be a reliable way to identify individuals," study lead author Jae Kwak said in a statement. "If this can be...

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2008-06-25 11:50:00

Young children dislike beer smell when moms drink to escape How children respond to the smell of alcoholic beverages is related to their mothers' reasons for drinking, according to a new study from the Monell Chemical Senses Center. When asked to choose between the odor of beer and an unpleasant odor, children of mothers classified as 'escape drinkers' were more likely than children of non-escape drinkers to choose the unpleasant odor. "Children's responses to odors provide us with a window...

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2008-03-17 16:00:00

Similarities highlight environment's role in shaping evolution of taste preferencesAccording to researchers at the Monell Center, fruit flies are more like humans in their responses to many sweet tastes than are almost any other species. The diverse range of molecules that humans experience as sweet do not necessarily taste sweet to other species. For example, aspartame, a sweetener used by humans, does not taste sweet to rats and mice. However, fruit flies respond positively to most...

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2008-02-26 09:10:00

Primer describes current understanding of human taste perception and biologyDespite the significance of taste to both human gratification and survival, a basic understanding of this primal sense is still unfolding. Taste provides both pleasure and protection. Often taken for granted, the sense of taste evaluates everything humans put into their mouths. Taste mediates recognition of a substance and the final decision process before it is either swallowed and taken into the body, or rejected as...

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2008-01-14 15:55:00

Obesity quick fix unlikely; problem even more complex than previously thoughtPHILADELPHIA "“ Reporting in the online journal BMC Genetics, researchers from the Monell Center have for the first time attempted to count the number of genes that contribute to obesity and body weight. The findings suggest that over 6,000 genes "“ about 25 percent of the genome "“ help determine an individual's body weight. "Reports describing the discovery of a new "Ëœobesity gene' have...

2007-04-09 03:00:00

By Tom Avril, The Philadelphia Inquirer Apr. 9--George Preti didn't go to medical school. He is a Ph.D. organic chemist, his lab stocked with gas chromatography equipment and test tubes. He has data to analyze and three post-docs to supervise, and he faces that familiar problem of the modern scientist: Grant money is running low. Yet once every week or two, he squeezes in time for a money-losing venture. For a nominal fee, he meets with people who have come to his Philadelphia lab from all...

2005-12-07 17:05:35

A new study from the Monell Chemical Senses Center may shed light on why some people like salt more than others. The results suggest that a person's liking for salty taste may be related to how much they weighed when they were born. In a paper published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the Monell researchers report that individual differences in salty taste acceptance by two-month old infants are inversely related to birth weight: lighter birth weight infants show greater...


Word of the Day
penuche
  • A fudgelike confection of brown sugar, cream or milk, and chopped nuts.
'Penuche' is a variant of 'panocha,' a coarse grade of sugar made in Mexico. 'Panocha' probably comes from the Spanish 'panoja, panocha,' ear of grain.
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