Tiny DNA difference controls how you like or hate specific smells

| | December 16, 2013

People react differently to the same smells. Something that smells wonderful to you could be offensive to your friend, but why this is so has been a mystery.

The answer could lie in your genetic makeup, says a research team from Duke University. Their findings, published in Nature Neuroscience, reveal that a difference at the smallest level of DNA — one amino acid on one gene — determines whether or not you like a smell.

Approximately 400 genes code for the receptors in our noses, and according to the 1000 Genomes Project, there are more than 900,000 variations of those genes. How we smell odors is determined by sensors controlled by these receptors. A suite of receptors in the nose will be activated by a given odor, creating a specific signal for the brain.

Read the full, original story: Sense Of Smell Starts At The Genetic Level

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Click the link above to read the full, original article.

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