HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Separate genetic mutations gave people, chimps bitter-taste sensitivity

SALT LAKE CITY Humans and chimpanzees share the ability to taste, or not taste, a bitter synthetic compound called PTC--as well as numerous other toxic substances--but contrary to longstanding scientific thought, they developed that ability through separate genetic mutations, according to new research led by University of Utah and University of Washington geneticists Stephen Wooding, Ph.D., and Michael Bamshad, M.D.

The ability to taste PTC (phenylthiocarbamide) and other bitter compounds probably evolved as a way to protect animals from eating poisonous plants, according to Wooding and Bamshad, senior authors of a study reported in the April 13 cover story in Nature. Being a PTC taster or non-taster has far-reaching implications for human behavior, such as in the foods people eat and even whether they smoke cigarettes, said Wooding, research assistant professor of human genetics at the U of U's Eccles Institute of Human Genetics.

Evidence that humans and chimpanzees harbor different kinds of mutations suggests that the similar patterns of PTC sensitivity in the two species may be an evolutionary coincidence. "With this particular gene, it shows that humans and chimps probably faced different pressures from natural selection," Wooding said. "Chimps and humans outwardly show the same patterns of variation, but the mutations in each species are affecting taste sensitivity in completely different ways."

About 75 percent of people worldwide can taste PTC, while the remaining quarter can't. PTC tasters are less likely to smoke cigarettes than non-tasters, but they're also less likely to eat cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, that are important sources of nutrition, Wooding said.

Differences in PTC sensitivity were first discovered in 1930, when American chemist Arthur Fox accidentally let loose some of the compound in his laboratory. Fox noted that while some people complained of a bad taste from PTC, others could not taste it al
'"/>

Contact: Phil Sahm
Phil.Sahm@hsc.utah.edu
801-581-2517
University of Utah Health Sciences Center
12-Apr-2006


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Separate genes influence speed, accuracy in decoding written words in dyslexia
2. Diverse genetic abnormalities lead to NF-κB activation in multiple myeloma
3. Does the desire to consume alcohol and tobacco come from our genetic makeup?
4. Almac Diagnostics announces pioneering genetic research on ductal carcinoma in situ
5. Penn researchers discover pathway that eliminates genetic defects in red blood cells
6. Identifying the mechanism behind a genetic susceptibility to type 2 diabetes
7. After a decades-long search, scientists identify new genetic risk factors for multiple sclerosis
8. Discoverer of Sly Syndrome finds way of delivering medicine to fight rare genetic disorder
9. Identified main genetic variants involved in response to HIV
10. Restless legs genetics on the move
11. UK scientists lift lid on genetics of coronary artery disease

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:8/26/2018)... ... , ... Maire Mayne, an evidence-based energy healer, today announces ... inflammation and autoimmune disorders and improve overall immune response. , The preclinical research ... data was reported:,     Over 180% increase in overall immunity ...
(Date:8/23/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Lajollacooks4u is proud to have hosted a variety of groups this year – ... as Illumina, Qualcomm, Hewlett Packard, Sequenom and more, have all visited the La Jolla-based venue ... Part of the reason clientele return is due to Lajollacooks4u’s signature team-building format, a way ...
(Date:8/17/2018)... and LIEGE, Belgium (PRWEB) , ... ... ... today announced the acquisition of NXT-Dx, an established epigenetics service provider based ... including a number of targeted DNA methylation assays using pyrosequencing or Next-Generation ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/23/2018)... ... 2018 , ... Crucial Data Solutions, Inc. announces the release ... fully-featured app for electronic data capture (EDC) and electronic participant reported outcomes (ePRO) ... of the market share for mobile devices worldwide; in turn, this enables more ...
(Date:8/17/2018)... ... , ... The opening of the new Titusville facility marks the completion of ... had a well established local presence, servicing the Space Coast since 1972. Astro Pak ... ongoing work at the Mobile Launch Platform (MLP) in support of NASA’s upcoming Space ...
(Date:8/14/2018)... ... ... Labconco Corporation manufactures laboratory equipment, specializing in ventilation enclosures ... other lab equipment, such as glassware washers and freeze dryers. Labconco has ISO ... and manufacturing. , Through this webinar, which is sponsored by Labconco ...
(Date:8/9/2018)... ... August 08, 2018 , ... RMC ... combining its deep pharmaceutical compliance and technical expertise with professional video production ... GxP training requirements. , Bringing training to life for your team ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: