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The Sciences

NCBI ROFL: Children smelling man-sweat... for science!

DiscoblogBy ncbi roflAugust 19, 2011 4:00 AM

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"Male sweat smells disgusting to many adults, but it is unclear whether children find it so. In Experiment 1A, children (mean age = 8.7 years) and adolescents (M=16.6 years) smelled male sweat and other odors, rated each for liking, and attempted their identification. Only female adolescents disliked male sweat and could identify it. Experiment 1B, using the same procedure, obtained this gender difference in adults (M=26.7 years). In Experiment 2, children (M=8.1 years) and adolescents (M=16.6 years) were cued about the identity of the same odors. Irrespective of gender, adolescents disliked male sweat more than did children. In sum, dislike for the odor of male sweat may be an acquired social response that is based on odor identification."

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Age-related changes in children's hedonic response to male body odor.

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Photo: flickr/ Phil Scoville

Related content: Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Does your left armpit smell different from your right? Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Garlic: a sensory pleasure or a social nuisance? Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: This biological weapon stinks. Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: When your sweat turns red, maybe it’s time to eat less food coloring. WTF is NCBI ROFL? Read our FAQ!

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