Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Smell of death

23.10.2007
Odorant chemical agents, pheromones, serve for animals’ contact purposes. Animals mark the territory by odorous discharges, demonstrate their hierarchic roles or sex attribute to their congeners, regulate propagation in the group, provide for the mother/baby interrelation.

Pheromones perform a lot of functions, and the researchers are striving to perceive them all, but they carry out the investigations mainly on healthy animals. Chemical signals of sick animals have been much less studied although they are no less interesting.

B.P. Surinov worked with the mice, part of which had received a fatal dose of gamma irradiation, and part – a toxic dose of lead nitrate, and one more group of animals was inoculated with cancerous growth. The animalsurine was collected on a sheet of filter paper, which was placed under the netted bottom of the cage for twenty-four hours. Then it was the turn of healthy tester- mice. They were placed one at a time into a cage, where paper with urine samples of experimental and healthy animals was lying in secluded nooks. The tester-mouse would follow the smell and the experimentalist observed which paper it would choose.

It has turned out that at the early stage of irradiation, poisoning or tumour development, pheromones of sick mice attract their congeners. The same action is produced by the urine smell of the rodents that are not threatened with death, for example, of the ones that had experienced stress or received a non-fatal radiation dose. When the pathology has developed and the mouse’s fate has been determined, its urine acquires repulsive properties, which are particularly noticeable on the eve of the death. The smell action does not depend on the pathology nature, but it only depends on its severity. The meaning of repulsive signals is clear: they limit contacts of seriously ill animals and prevent possible spread of infection (apparently, the pheromone notifies only about severity of the sick animal’s state, but does not inform about the exact diagnosis). The researchers are still to sort out the reason why the pheromones attracting to a sick animal are needed.

... more about:
»Pheromone »death »smell »urine

Chemical signals about pathology are typical not only of animals, but also of people. Back at the times when the main role in medicine was played not by devices and analysis, but by the doctor’s experience and intuition, physicians noted that the patients with different diseases have specific smells, and physicians even diagnosed by the smell of urine. And several days before the death, a specific smell appears with severely ill patients, the specialists calling the smell the harbinger of death.

Consequently, animals (probably likewise human beings) have the olfactory signal mechanism to inform about the critical state of the organism. It regulates animals’ behavior.

Nadezda Markina | alfa
Further information:
http://www.informnauka.ru

Further reports about: Pheromone death smell urine

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Single-stranded DNA and RNA origami go live
15.12.2017 | Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard

nachricht New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists
15.12.2017 | Louisiana State University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>