Never Let 'Em Smell Ya' Sweat
A new study proves that mammals can communicate danger to each other through smell, and reveals exactly how they do it. Scientists at the University of Lausanne, in Switzerland, found that when mice are placed in an environment where there is a beaker of water containing alarm pheromones emitted by other mice, they immediately sniff out the danger and move away from the beaker.
Could be why Bar-ack!'s losin' ground in the polls. He's startin' to smell like an old fish. Oh…wait…
The mice’s keen reaction has been attributed to the 300 to 500 cells found at the entrance of their noses, called the Grueneberg ganglion. This ganglion is present also in human beings, according to the scientist Hans Grueneberg who discovered it in 1973. The Swiss authors of the new study, led by Julien Brechbühl, speculate that "one can imagine that humans have a similar method" of communicating danger to each other.
Yes, those cute little "gang-lions" are as good an explanation as any for the herd-induced panic in the Demo-cat litterpan. And the fear stench just keeps spreadin' out from the Center of the Universe.
In another experiment, scientists removed a Grueneberg ganglion from a mouse to see how it reacted without this ganglion. The mouse was found to be able to detect other smells, such as a hidden biscuit, but it failed to react to a warning or alarm pheromone.
Which explains why so many fools actually believe what Bar-ack!'s hackin' up.
The detection of these alert signals spark "specific behaviours" – such as fleeing from danger or predators, said co-author Marie-Christine Broillet. Other species are known to deploy a similar system.
Generally known as votin' Republican.
posted by Harrison at 11:23 PM