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Suitable partners can literally sniff each other out, finding an optimal genetic other half using their noses by edgardo

Suitable partners can literally sniff each other out, finding an optimal genetic other half using their noses

On the day we each spit into separate test tubes, I don’t yet understand how a DNA test can offer evidence of compatibility, because I am only on page eight of Daniel M Davis’s book The Compatibility Gene. But here’s the gist of the idea: there are a small number of human genes � a tiny section of the short arm of chromosome six � that may play a role in determining how attractive you are to a potential mate.

And while the mechanism behind this phenomenon is poorly understood, that hasn’t stopped dating agencies from employing MHC typing as a matchmaking tool

The basis for this notion is the so-called smelly T-shirt experiment, first performed by a Swiss zoologist called Claus Wedekind in 1994. He analysed a particular bit of the DNA of a group of students, looking specifically at the major histocompatibility genes (MHC). The students were then split into 49 females and 44 males. The men were asked to wear plain cotton T-shirts for two nights while avoiding anything � alcohol, cologne etc � that might alter their natural odour.

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