Public Release: 

Genes can affect how much you enjoy pork in a meal


Genetics may help determine how good your meal tastes, according to a report published May 2 in the open access journal PLoS ONE.

The study investigated how people with different versions of the gene for an odor receptor gene, which is sensitive to a specific compound naturally present in pig meat, rated the taste of different pork samples. In both smell and taste tests, participants' response depended on the version of the gene they had, with one version resulting in more favorable responses than the other.

The report sheds light on the reasons for the controversies around the need for sorting entire male pork meat according to androstenone content.


The researchers are from Animalia/ Nofima/Norwegian University of Life Sciences in Norway, and from Duke University Medical Center/ Monell Chemical Senses Center in the U.S.

Citation: Lunde K, Egelandsdal B, Skuterud E, Mainland JD, Lea T, et al. (2012) Genetic Variation of an Odorant Receptor OR7D4 and Sensory Perception of Cooked Meat Containing Androstenone. PLoS ONE 7(5): e35259. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0035259

Financial Disclosure: Norwegian Research Council for its grant to this activity through project number 63164, ''Boar meat-consumer aspects and exploitation of resources.''JM is supported by a United States National Institutes of Health (NIH)-NRSA fellowship and DC011373 and HM is supported by the NIH (DC005782 and DC010857).The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.

Competing Interest Statement: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.


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