Olfactory sensitivity in humans: genetic versus environmental control

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Science  09 May 1980:
Vol. 208, Issue 4444, pp. 607-609
DOI: 10.1126/science.7189296


Olfactory sensitivity to acetic acid, isobutyric acid, and 2-sec-butyl-cyclohexanone was tested in 97 adult male twin pairs to determine the extent to which variation in odor perception was genetically determined. Analysis of the data revealed no evidence for heritability of olfactory sensitivity. However, factors significantly associated with odor perception included cigar, pipe, and cigarette smoking; body fatness; alcohol consumption; and diabetes mellitus.