Genetics of Fun!

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The Denver Museum of Nature and Science's Genetics of Taste lab has a new study – for young and old alike!

The Denver Museum of Nature and Science's Genetics of Taste lab has a new study – for young and old alike! Switching from studying bitter genes to the mystery of fatty acids, people ages 8 and up can be a part of a groundbreaking discovery.

 

 

Is fatty acid the sixth taste? That is the question trying to be answered by this two year study. To do this, the data has to show a connection between the tongue and the brain with fatty tastes. Museum visitors can come and be one of 3000+ participants over the next 24 months.

 

 

When partaking in this (on average) hour experiment, visitors will be asked to take a questionnaire, a dissolvable strip of fatty acid test, a cheek swab, an odor test, a body composition analysis, and a spicy cinnamon test.

 

 

Dr. Nicole Garneau, the leader of this study, said, “We hope that with a potential 3000 visitors, someone will come up with a word (describing the fatty acid “taste”) that resonates with the community.” This would be relevant if the data shows that fatty acid is a taste.

 

 

Genetics of Taste is a fun way to learn about your body. If you’re reading a book about taste, it’s not as fun as actually participating; with this lab, you can learn in a hands-on way.

 

 

“Who looked in the mirror today? Everybody looked in the mirror today, right?” she said. “That’s because you and YOUR body is much more interesting than anything that you can read in a book.”

 

 

The lab is a two-in-one deal, fun and education for you, data for science. “You’re giving back to the science community by helping us with this data that we really want to get. But also imagine if YOU were a part in figuring out whether this (fatty acid) is the sixth taste. Not many eight-year-olds, or even 25-year-olds or 60-year-olds get to say that.”