Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Perfume Post: Our Human Sense of Smell Is Not That Bad!

I was taught that Homo sapiens has a lousy sense of smell compared to other mammals. Well. Not so.
Perfumistas take heart! (Thank you, Alert Gardener Jim!)

Humans have a good sense of smell    Peter Stern   5/12/17 

In comparison to that of other animals, the human sense of smell is widely considered to be weak and underdeveloped. This is, however, an unproven hypothesis. In a Review, McGann traces the origins of this false belief back to comparative 19th-century neuroanatomical studies by Broca. A modern look at the human olfactory bulb shows that it is rather large compared with those of rats and mice, which are presumed to possess a superior sense of smell. In fact, the number of olfactory bulb neurons across 24 mammalian species is comparatively similar, with humans in the middle of the pack, and our sense of smell is similar to that of other mammals.

Science, this issue p. 597
Head out to your local perfume shop, or botanical garden, and have a terrific sniffa without feeling like a lowly class of mammal! Here's to the olfactory arts....

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