ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202109.0356.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Behavior Sciences Keywords: Olfaction; functional MRI; Anosmia
Online: 21 September 2021 (11:14:09 CEST)
Olfactory system is a vital sensory system in mammals, giving them the ability to connect with their environment. Anosmia, or the complete loss of olfaction ability, which could be caused by injuries, is an interesting topic for inspectors with the aim of diagnosing patients. Sniffing test is currently utilized to examine if an individual is suffering from anosmia; however, functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) provides unique information about the structure and function of the different areas of the human brain, and therefore this noninvasive method could be used as a tool to locate the olfactory-related regions of the brain. In this study, by recruiting 31 healthy and anosmic individuals, we investigated the neural BOLD responses in the olfactory cortices following two odor stimuli, rose and eucalyptus, by using a 3T MR scanner. Comparing the two groups, we observed a network of brain areas being more active in the normal individuals when smelling the odors. In addition, a number of brain areas also showed an activation decline during the odor stimuli, which is hypothesized as a resource allocation deactivation. This study illustrated alterations in the brain activity between the normal individuals and anosmic patients when smelling odors, and could potentially help for a better anosmia diagnosis in the future.
Subject: Social Sciences, Cognitive Science Keywords: smell sensitivity; olfaction; threshold; staircase; QUEST
Online: 16 May 2019 (10:39:54 CEST)
The ability to smell is crucial for most species as it enables the detection of environmental threats like smoke, fosters social interactions, and contributes to the sensory evaluation of food and eating behavior. The high prevalence of smell disturbances throughout the life span calls for a continuous effort to improve tools for quick and reliable assessment of olfactory function. Odor-dispensing pens, called Sniffin' Sticks, are an established method to deliver olfactory stimuli during diagnostic evaluation. We tested the suitability of a Bayesian adaptive algorithm (QUEST) to estimate olfactory sensitivity using Sniffin' Sticks by comparing QUEST sensitivity thresholds with those obtained using a procedure based on an established standard staircase protocol. Thresholds were measured twice with both procedures in two sessions (Test and Retest). Overall, both procedures exhibited considerable overlap with QUEST displaying slightly higher test-retest correlations, less variability between measurements, and reduced testing duration. Notably, participants were more frequently presented with the highest concentration during the QUEST which may foster adaptation and habituation effects. We conclude that further research is required to better understand and optimize the procedure for assessment of olfactory performance.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202201.0105.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Animal Science, Veterinary Science And Zoology Keywords: rabbit; biostimulation; reproduction; urine; seminal plasma; chemocommunication; olfaction; pheromones
Online: 10 January 2022 (12:07:54 CET)
Biostimulation is an animal management practice that helps improve reproductive parameters by modulating animal sensory systems. Chemical signals, mostly known as pheromones, have a great potential in this regard. This study was conducted to determine the influence of short-term female rabbit exposure to different conditions, mainly pheromone-mediated, on reproductive parameters of inseminated does. Groups of 60 females/each were exposed to 1) female urine, 2) male urine, 3) seminal plasma and 4) female-female interaction, just before artificial insemination, and compared to isolated females controls (female-female separated). The following reproductive parameters were analyzed for each group: receptivity (vulvar color), fertility (calving rate), prolificacy and number of born alive and dead kits ⁄ litter. Our results showed that the biostimulation methods employed in this experiment did not significantly improve any of the analyzed parameters. However, female doe exposure to urine, especially to male urine, slightly increased fertility levels when compared to the rest of the experimental conditions. Female-female interaction before artificial insemination, which is a common practice in rabbit farms, did not have any effect, which suggests its removal to avoid unnecessary animal management and time cost. On the other hand, fertility ranges were lower for animals with pale vulvar color whereas no differences were noticed among the other three colours which measure receptivity (pink, red, purple), thus suggesting that these three colours could be grouped together. Additionally, equine chorionic gonadotropin injection could be replaced with various biostimulation methods, therefore reducing or replacing current hormonal treatments, and contributing to animal welfare and to a natural image of animal production.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.2241.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Behavioral Sciences Keywords: avian olfaction; Sexual selection; Social selection; chemical cues; Partner quality
Online: 31 May 2023 (11:54:29 CEST)
The role of chemical communication in social relationships of birds is receiving growing attention but our knowledge is still scarce compared to other taxa. Previous evidence suggests that chemical cues emitted by birds may carry information about their characteristics that may be useful in a sexual selection context. However, experimental studies are needed to investigate the role of bird chemical cues in signalling quality of potential partners. We performed an experimental study aimed to disentangle whether female zebra finches, Taeniopygia guttata, use chemical cues to assess the body condition and body size of potential partners. We offered focal females the scent of two males differing in body condition and body size. Our results show that females can assess the body condition of potential partners using olfaction. However, contrary to expected in a mate choice context, our results show that females avoided the scent of the male with greater body condition and body size. Our results therefore suggest that, despite performing the study during breeding period, social interactions may be mediating the avoidance of the scent of the conspecific of the opposite sex with better body condition and body size in this gregarious species.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.0906.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Respiratory viruses; Anosmia; Olfaction Disorders; loss of smell; COVID-19
Online: 12 May 2023 (08:49:10 CEST)
The novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) known as severe acute respiratory syndrome - coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has emerged in China in 2019, and caused an outbreak of unusual viral pneumonia. The olfactory dysfunction following the infection of different variants of SARS-CoV-2 is now accepted as a hallmark symptom in patients. Recent studies have pointed out the relationship between COVID-19 and altered or loss of smell in infected patients. This mini review provides an overview of the role of SARS-CoV-2 and the other acute respiratory viruses in the development the human olfactory pathophysiology. We highlight the importance of deciphering the molecular mechanisms underlying the olfactory dysfunction caused by SARS-CoV-2 to help design new drugs to restore the altered or loss of smell in affected patients.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202112.0082.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Animal Science, Veterinary Science And Zoology Keywords: Avian olfaction; foraging; herbivore-induced plant volatiles; defence against herbivory
Online: 6 December 2021 (15:21:49 CET)
The tri-trophic interactions between plants, insects, and insect predators and parasitoids are often mediated by chemical cues. The attraction to Herbivore-Infested Plant Volatiles (HIPVs) has been well documented for arthropod predators and parasitoids, and more recently for insectivorous birds. The attraction to plant volatiles induced by the exogenous application of methyl jasmonate (MeJA), a phytohormone typically produced in response to an attack of chewing herbivores, have provided controversial results, both in arthropod and avian predators. In this study, we aimed to examine whether potential differences in the composition of bouquets of volatiles produced by Herbivore-infested and MeJA-treated Pyrenean oak trees (Quercus pyrenaica) were related to differential avian attraction, as results from a previous study suggested. Results showed that the overall emission of volatiles produced by MeJA-treated and Herbivore-infested trees did not differ, and were higher than emissions of Control trees, although MeJA treatment showed more significant reaction and released several specific compounds in contrast to Herbivore-induced trees. These slight differences in the volatile composition may explain why avian predators were not so attracted to MeJA-treated trees as observed in a previous study in this plant-herbivore system. Unfortunately, the lack of avian visits to the experimental trees in the current study does not allow us to confirm this result and points out the need to perform more robust predator studies.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202105.0761.v1
Subject: Social Sciences, Psychology Keywords: communication; olfaction; scent-marking; gas chromatography–mass spectrometry; Eulemur coronatus
Online: 31 May 2021 (12:09:44 CEST)
Primates are traditionally considered to have a poor sense of smell. However, olfaction is important for non-human primates as demonstrated by conspicuous scent-marking behaviours in lemurs. We studied two family groups (N=4) of crowned lemurs (Eulemur coronatus) housed at Colchester and Twycross zoos (UK) by combining behavioural observations and chemical analyses of scent-marks. We recorded observations of olfactory behaviours for 201 h using instantaneous scan sampling. We investigated the volatile compounds of ano-genital odour secretions using solid-phase microextraction and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Males scent-marked most frequently, displaying ano-genital marking for allomarking, head marking for countermarking and wrist marking in specific areas of the enclosure. Females displayed ano-genital marking predominantly on feeding devices. We detected a total of 38 volatile components in all male ano-genital scent-marks and 26 in all female samples of ano-genital odour secretions, including a series of esters, aldehydes, ketones, alcohols, terpenes, volatile fatty acids and hydrocarbons that have been identified in odour profiles of other primates. In conclusion, we found sexual dimorphism in crowned lemurs. Male head and wrist marking behaviours might play defensive territorial functions, while ano-genital marking would be related to socio-sexual communication as chemical mate-guarding. Female ano-genital marking might be involved in resource defense.
REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0037.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Anatomy And Physiology Keywords: olfactory; olfaction; glia; ensheathing cells; primary olfactory; cell-based; therapy
Online: 1 March 2021 (17:42:19 CET)
Olfactory ensheathing cells (OECs) are the glial cells that accompany axons from the olfactory epithelium to their targets in the olfactory bulb. They possess unique features that have made them the subject of much study as being potentially useful in cell-based therapeutic approaches to CNS repair. Investigation of OECs has demonstrated antigenic and morphological heterogeneity in their population. No marker specific to and selective for OECs have yet been identified, and many of the markers used are variably expressed by other glial cells. Even among OECs, these markers appear to vary in vivo (depending on their anatomical location, contact with other cells, and developmental timing) and in vitro. The variation across the population of OECs has compromised their isolation and characterization. It has also made the task of identifying meaningful subpopulations - with greater or lesser therapeutic utility - dependent on identifying the source of their variability. Such information would aid in both the harvest and experimental manipulation of OECs to optimize their therapeutic effect. One way to understand the nature of this variability is to seek its potential causes in vivo. This must begin with an examination of the structure of the olfactory nerve. Here, the structure and development of the primary olfactory projection are thoroughly reviewed with an emphasis on OECs and the cells with which they make contact. The relevant experimental results are also discussed. The weight of anatomical evidence indicates that the structural variations described in different locations and across species are mostly the result of spatiotemporal developmental factors. As such, the formation of the olfactory projection is mediated primarily by the source tissue, the olfactory epithelium. Cell-autonomous development is common elsewhere, and suits the evolutionary age and importance of olfaction, as well as its continued regenerative capacity. Our findings provide a more systematic anatomical understanding of this nerve. That understanding indicates that variation in axon ensheathment by OECs is an inherent feature arising from the flexibility of the ensheathing program. This perspective, along with the anatomical data reviewed here, can inform more carefully controlled laboratory investigations designed to uncover the detailed mechanisms governing OEC biology.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202109.0058.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Anatomy And Physiology Keywords: TRPA1; Drosophila melanogaster; isoform; citronellal; menthol; AITC; HC-030031; repellent; avoidance; olfaction
Online: 3 September 2021 (10:35:49 CEST)
The Transient Receptor Potential Ankyrin 1 (TRPA1) cation channels function as broadly-tuned sensors of noxious chemicals in many species. Recent studies identified four functional TRPA1 isoforms in Drosophila melanogaster (dTRPA1(A) to (D)), but their responses to non-electrophilic chemicals are yet to be fully characterized. Methods: We determined the behavioral responses of adult flies to the mammalian TRPA1 non-electrophilic activators citronellal and menthol, and characterized the effects of these compounds on all four dTRPA1 channel isoforms using intracellular Ca2+ imaging and whole-cell patch-clamp recordings. Results: Wild type flies avoided citronellal and menthol in an olfactory test and this behavior was reduced in dTrpA1 mutant flies. Both compounds activate all dTRPA1 isoforms in the heterologous expression system HEK293T, with the following sensitivity series: dTRPA1(C) = dTRPA1(D) > dTRPA1(A) ≫ dTRPA1(B) for citronellal and dTRPA1(A) > dTRPA1(D) > dTRPA1(C) > dTRPA1(B) for menthol. Conclusions: dTrpA1 was required for the normal avoidance of Drosophila melanogaster towards citronellal and menthol. All dTRPA1 isoforms are activated by both compounds, but the dTRPA1(B) is consistently the least sensitive. We discuss how these findings may guide further studies on the physiological roles and the structural bases of chemical sensitivity of TRPA1 channels.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202305.1286.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Ecology, Evolution, Behavior And Systematics Keywords: geographic barrier; homotypic; heterotypic; Liolaemus lemniscatus; Liolaemus tenuis; olfaction; scents; speciation; tongue flick
Online: 18 May 2023 (07:23:35 CEST)
Reproductive isolating barriers are a crucial element in the speciation process. There are various types of barriers, and within those that act early in the speciation process, the behavioral one can play an important role in isolating populations or closely related species. It has been shown that the high diversity of some taxa correlates with the variation of sexual signals, which facilitate isolation. Here it is explored whether chemical signals may contribute to the high diversity of Liolaemus lizards, which has more than 290 species. Population chemical discrimination was investigated in two co-distributed species, L. tenuis and L. lemniscatus. The studied populations were closely located and likely belonged to the same genetic lineages. Lizards of both species discriminated between scents of their own and different populations, and in most cases, scents from their population were preferred. Results suggest a fast evolution of scents, and their recognition, and there for the ethological barriers associated with the chemical modality may evolve fast. However, because the studied species differed in the strength of the exhibited population chemical discrimination, ethological barriers evolve at different rates across species. It can be concluded that ethological barriers involving the chemical modality may disrupt species' cohesion, contributing to Liolaemus diversification, in synergy or not with geographical barriers.
COMMUNICATION | doi:10.20944/preprints202207.0069.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Medicine And Pharmacology Keywords: olfactory; smell; olfaction; anosmia; odor; rhinology; head neck surgery; otolaryngology; platelet rich plasma; recovery
Online: 5 July 2022 (08:33:30 CEST)
Objective: To describe technique of platelet rich plasma injection into the olfactory cleft in patients with long-term COVID-19 olfactory dysfunction. Methods: The technique starts with the blood extraction and the isolation of PRP through a 10-min centrifugation (4,200 rpm). The supernatant was injected in nasal regions with a 27-G needle after a local anesthesia with Xylocain 10% spray. The injection was performed through a 0° rigid optic. Precisely, several points of 0.2–0.5 mL were performed in the nasal septum in regard of the head of the middle turbine, and in the head of the middle turbine in both sides. Clinical, psychophysical and pain outcomes were evaluated pre- to post-injection. Results: A 22-year-old female with 24-month post-COVID-19 anosmia was recruited for the injection of PRP. The olfactory cleft endoscopic scale score was 0 and the threshold, discrimination and identification scores were 1, 8 and 0, respectively. The Olfactory Disorder Questionnaire score was 51. The patient benefited from the injection of 2.2 mL of PRP in nasal regions, which was done without complication. The procedure pain level was 2/10, while the local anesthesia with xylocaine 10% was judged as the most annoyance step with a score of 3/10. At 2-month post-injection, the TDI scores reached 16, 16, and 16 (48), while the Olfactory Disorder Questionnaire was 73. The patient described its recovery as very rapid, lasting 3-4 days, and occurring 3-week post-injection. Conclusion: The injection of PRP into the olfactory cleft is a safe and easiness new approach that may improve the recovery of smell sense.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201809.0068.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Remote Sensing Keywords: olfaction, olfactory, odorants, pheromones, smell, electric field, electromagnetic radiation, electric field sensor, insect antennae
Online: 4 September 2018 (14:31:22 CEST)
The olfactory system is capable of distinguishing individual odorants from among a virtually unlimited number. Fish, for example, detect changes in the electric field environment induced by prey and other sources. Floral electric fields exhibit variations in pattern and structure, which can be discriminated by bumblebees. We have constructed an electric field sensor, which, in the course of focussing on achieving maximum sensitivity and consistency, ultimately resembles features of the insect sensorium. A “fingerprint” 3D plot ( time, frequency range, voltage amplitude), representing the emitted electric field profile, is presented for each of a variety of odorants and other chemicals. The substance-specific electric-field emission and identification is not impeded by containers or barriers or distance.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201901.0058.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Insect Science Keywords: Aedes aegypti; Acyrthosiphon pisum; Myzus persicae; Vicia faba; honeydew; honeydew odorants; mosquito sugar feeding; microbe-emitted odorants; mosquito olfaction
Online: 8 January 2019 (10:13:01 CET)
Plant sugar is an essential dietary constituent for mosquitoes, and hemipteran honeydew is one of the many forms of plant sugar important to mosquitoes. Many insects rely on volatile honeydew semiochemicals to locate aphids or honeydew itself. Mosquitoes exploit volatile semiochemicals to locate sources of plant sugar but their attraction to honeydew has not previously been investigated. Here we report the attraction of female yellow fever mosquitoes, Aedes aegypti, to honeydew odorants from the green peach aphid, Myzus persicae, and the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, feeding on fava bean, Vicia faba. We used solid phase micro-extraction and gas chromatography – mass spectrometry to collect and analyze headspace odorants from honeydew of A. pisum feeding on V. faba. An 8-component synthetic blend of these odorants and synthetic odorant blends of crude and sterile honeydew that we prepared according to literature data all attracted female A. aegypti. The synthetic blend containing microbial odor constituents proved more effective than the blend without these constituents. Our study provides the first evidence for anemotactic attraction of mosquitoes to honeydew and demonstrates a role for microbe-derived odorants in the attraction of mosquitoes to essential plant-sugar resources.