Re: Identity by smell (was Re:silly walks department)

From: zeb haradon (
Date: Thu Jun 08 2000 - 16:19:30 MDT

>From: James Rogers <>
>Subject: Identity by smell (was Re:silly walks department)
>Date: Thu, 8 Jun 2000 06:35:18 -0700
>wonder how much smell actually influences mate selection and
>supports similar types of subconscious communication.
>-James Rogers

Quite a bit. In a college biopsychology class, I was told of an experiment
where several males wore gauze under their armpits while excercising. The
gauze was put in a paper lunch bag (each male's gauze in a seperate bag),
and several women (not knowing who the men were) were asked to judge, on the
basis of smell of the lunch bag, who they would most like to go on a date
with (presumably it was a forced selection experiment). The results showed
that they had the strongest preference for men who had a larger difference
in immune system to them. I don't quite understand this part, and the proper
word for it is on the tip of my tongue.. but it's when you have certain
factors on your white blood cells which is inherited, and the logic behind
this is that their offspring would have resistance to a wider range of
diseases because of the differences in the immune system of both parents.
Another cool experiment - males have some kind of gland, near the genitals,
which secretes some kind of stuff which has a particular chemical in it.
This chemical was isolated, and put into lockets which would release it
throughout the day. So they took these lockets, plus scent-less lockets for
the control group, and had female volunteers wear them for a day, and
measure the amount of social interaction they had with males. The ones
wearing the chemical lockets had quite a bit more interaction, presumably
because they were responding to the pheromonic properties of the locket they
were wearing as if it were being secreted by whichever male they happened to
be sitting by.
And I'm sure you've heard of the "dormitory effect", where women's menstrual
cycles will synchronize if they're roommates. It's believed to be mediated
by pheromones.

Zeb Haradon (
My personal webpage:
A movie I'm directing:

Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Jul 27 2000 - 14:12:54 MDT