Market Smells II: Smell and Tell Walks (28 July Southwark London)

Why join us? We are conducting two Smell and Tell walks in Southwark. Come learn about your sense of smell and its evolution via two flash talks and a series of smell tests. The tests are not clinically diagnostic but provide a rough guide on how your sense of smell performs in different settings. When:Continue reading “Market Smells II: Smell and Tell Walks (28 July Southwark London)”

Smelling in the Wild Pilot Study Schedule

The first pilot study for Smelling in the Wild is taking place during the week commencing 28 August. We are going to be at two London markets (Brixton and Borough markets) asking for volunteers to assist us in understanding how the local smellscape impacts one’s sense of smell. Volunteering should only take about 10 minutesContinue reading “Smelling in the Wild Pilot Study Schedule”

Smelling in the Wild

With colleague Dr. Colette Berbesque (University of Roehampton), I am about to start two exciting new projects that focus on the human sense of smell in natural environments. One project will focus on how our sense of smell may be influenced by subsistence. Our project is a corollary study to work by the Sorokowskas andContinue reading “Smelling in the Wild”

Consider Smell: Arctic Edition (Afterthoughts)

Since the exhibit came down last week, I thought I’d post a few memories of First Friday exhibit opening night at Ursa Major Distillery for Consider Smell: Arctic Edition and some followup on responses from visitors to the gallery over the month-long display! We had a nice long line waiting for drinks before seeing the artContinue reading “Consider Smell: Arctic Edition (Afterthoughts)”

What does this smell like?

At the Consider Smell exhibit at Ursa Major Distillery during the month of March, visitors were asked to write down what they thought an unlabelled vial (birch) smelt like. The word cloud interestingly shows smoked/smoky/campfire as common responses–a lot of people were reminded of smoked meats and fishes either from fall hunt or spring spawning, a regional lifestyleContinue reading “What does this smell like?”

Consider Smell: Arctic Edition (Behind the Scenes Sneak Preview)

Join #considersmell this Friday in Fairbanks Alaska for an Arctic Edition of a travelling series of events that explore smelling, and other senses, through time and space. Come to the Ursa Major Distillery on Parks Highway from 5-8 for a multi-sensory experience! Some tools to get us started: the smoking gun! We use this to createContinue reading “Consider Smell: Arctic Edition (Behind the Scenes Sneak Preview)”

Consider Smell: Arctic Edition

Kara C. Hoover and Julia Feuer-Cotter 4 March 2016. Anthropology Colloquium in Bunnell 405 from 3-4:30 Consider Smell: Smelling Imagined Geographies through Time and Space 4 March 2016. First Friday at Ursa Major Distillery from 5-8pm Join us for a multi-sensory experience that opens the nose to engage deeply across the senses via multisensory molecularContinue reading “Consider Smell: Arctic Edition”

Sex and Evolution?

I like Michael Stoddart’s books in general–he has some great contributions to make and is one of a few popular scientists promoting olfaction. While reading his most recent book, I have been a bit frustrated by the simplistic view of human evolution and behavior. A recent Guardian piece by him “Smell evolution and the sexContinue reading “Sex and Evolution?”

The chirality of smell

As I prepare the first half of my Science of Smell online class, I am having fun looking for various examples of all things biomolecular, biochemical, and genetic related to olfaction. If I were a taste and flavour chemist or a molecular gastronomist, I’d probably be interested in somehow exploiting the chirality of biomolecules in foodContinue reading “The chirality of smell”

Is odorant diversity driving olfactory receptor genetic variation?

Olfactory receptor genes have more variation than most gene families in the human genome. The only family with greater diversity is the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Both families also exhibit high heterozygosity. Due to its association with disease, the MHC is well-studied. The explanation for the maintenance of MHC diversity is pathogen-driven selection–either through heterozygoteContinue reading “Is odorant diversity driving olfactory receptor genetic variation?”