Nanotechnology Now







Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button


DHgate

Home > Press > Is smell a quantum effect?

Abstract:
For better or for worse, most of us have our sense of smell working hard every second, every hour and every day - whether or not we are particularly conscious of it. We constantly use, and perhaps take for granted, this sensory equipment. We still do not know how smell works. This is in spite of revolutionary work by Buck and Axel in 2004 (for which they won the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine) that determined what type of receptors the olfactory receptors are and how they are organized.

Is smell a quantum effect?

London, UK | Posted on March 28th, 2011

In a recent publication for the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A, Jennifer Brookes discusses the current condition for theories of signal transduction in olfaction. One theory based on Luca Turin's hypothesis from 1996, holds promise; that an odorant's quantized vibrational mode (a phonon) may facilitate electron tunnelling which constitutes the recognition event in the nose. The novel mechanism is explored and explained.

Controversy still surrounds the conception that humans may ‘smell' vibrations - that smell is a spectral sense - analogous to seeing and hearing. This article clarifies that the mechanism is indeed physically feasible and proposes ways to quantize scent. The philosophy of the article emphasises testing and developing new ideas, particularly quantum ideas, in the context of molecular recognition in biology, with the aim of answering some interesting scientific questions or at least generating new ones!

This work has been published in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Visions of the future for the Royal Society's 350th anniversary year (Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A 2010 368, 3491-3502)

####

For more information, please click here

Copyright © London Centre for Nanotechnology

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

Journal link:

Related News Press

News and information

Nanoscale worms provide new route to nano-necklace structures March 29th, 2015

Solving molybdenum disulfide's 'thin' problem: Research team increases material's light emission by twelve times March 29th, 2015

A first glimpse inside a macroscopic quantum state March 28th, 2015

DFG to Establish One Clinical Research Unit and Five Research Units: New Projects to Investigate Complications in Pregnancy, Particle Physics, Nanoparticles, Implants and Transport Planning / Approximately 13 Million Euros in Funding for an Initial Three-Year Period March 28th, 2015

State-of-the-art online system unveiled to pinpoint metrology software accuracy March 27th, 2015

Physics

A first glimpse inside a macroscopic quantum state March 28th, 2015

Using magnetic fields to understand high-temperature superconductivity: Los Alamos explores experimental path to potential 'next theory of superconductivity' March 27th, 2015

Discoveries

Nanoscale worms provide new route to nano-necklace structures March 29th, 2015

Solving molybdenum disulfide's 'thin' problem: Research team increases material's light emission by twelve times March 29th, 2015

A first glimpse inside a macroscopic quantum state March 28th, 2015

Designer's toolkit for dynamic DNA nanomachines: Arm-waving nanorobot signals new flexibility in DNA origami March 27th, 2015

Announcements

Nanoscale worms provide new route to nano-necklace structures March 29th, 2015

Solving molybdenum disulfide's 'thin' problem: Research team increases material's light emission by twelve times March 29th, 2015

A first glimpse inside a macroscopic quantum state March 28th, 2015

DFG to Establish One Clinical Research Unit and Five Research Units: New Projects to Investigate Complications in Pregnancy, Particle Physics, Nanoparticles, Implants and Transport Planning / Approximately 13 Million Euros in Funding for an Initial Three-Year Period March 28th, 2015

Quantum nanoscience

Using magnetic fields to understand high-temperature superconductivity: Los Alamos explores experimental path to potential 'next theory of superconductivity' March 27th, 2015

Thousands of atoms entangled with a single photon: Result could make atomic clocks more accurate March 26th, 2015

Bar-Ilan U. researchers identify 'tipping point' between quantum and classical worlds: Study sheds new light on 'spooky' quantum optics March 24th, 2015

Nanospheres cooled with light to explore the limits of quantum physics March 17th, 2015

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More










ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







© Copyright 1999-2015 7th Wave, Inc. All Rights Reserved PRIVACY POLICY :: CONTACT US :: STATS :: SITE MAP :: ADVERTISE