Sense of Smell
Name: Diana H.
Where can I find good reliable information about the
human sense of smell and whether it is stronger in men or women?
A good starting point for general info on the human
sense of smell is the National Geographic Survey of
Smell, carried out in 1989. In a PubMed search for
'human sense of smell' I found a follow up on this
study from Sweden, where the subjects were twins (to
discriminate nature from nurture), see J Gerontol B
Psychol Sci Soc Sci 2001 Jul;56(4):P226-P233 (freely
available on the web at
The abstract of a publication by Bengtsson et al(Brain
activation during odor perception in males and
females. Neuroreport 2001 Jul 3;12(9):2027-2033)
starts with the sentence: 'Several studies indicate
that women outperform men in olfactory identification
tasks.' If you can lay your hands on a copy of this
paper you'd find all the data you need.
Dr. Trudy Wassenaar
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Update: June 2012