Although potential odorant receptor genes have been identified, the precise genetic component of perception of odours is still obscure. Although there is some evidence for heritability of a few olfactory-related traits, no genome-wide search for loci harboring underlying genes has been published to date. We performed a genome-wide scan to identify loci affecting the identification, intensity and pleasantness of 12 odours ( cinnamon, turpentine, lemon, smoke, chocolate, rose, paint thinner, banana, pineapple, gasoline, soap, onion) using 146 Finnish adults from 26 families. Several of these traits showed heritable variation in the families. Suggestive evidence of linkage was found for the pleasantness of cinnamon odour (h(2) = 61%) on chromosome 4q32.3 (multipoint logarithm of the odds ( LOD) score 3.01), as well as for the perceived intensity of paint thinner odour (h(2) = 31%) on chromosome 2p14 (multipoint LOD score 2.55). As these loci do not contain any known human odorant receptor genes, they may rather harbor genes that affect the central processing than the peripheral detection of the odour signal. Thus, perception of odours is potentially modified by genes other than those encoding odorant receptors.
- 416 Elintarviketieteet