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Cover

Smell: A Very Short Introduction

Matthew Cobb

May 2020

ISBN: 9780198825258

168 pages
Paperback
174x111mm

Very Short Introductions

Price: £8.99

Matthew Cobb explores the sense of smell - its complex evolutionary history, and its many functions in a wide variety of animals, including humans. He describes the latest scientific research into this remarkable faculty, involving the brain as much as the nose, and reveals surprising insights into animal and human life.

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Description

Matthew Cobb explores the sense of smell - its complex evolutionary history, and its many functions in a wide variety of animals, including humans. He describes the latest scientific research into this remarkable faculty, involving the brain as much as the nose, and reveals surprising insights into animal and human life.

  • Summarises the latest neurobiological research on smell, in humans and other mammals, as well as in insects and fish
  • Discusses how our genes determine what we can and cannot smell, and why some people like a given smell and others do not
  • Explores how animals use smell to navigate and communicate
  • Considers the future of smell in a world of robots and climate change
  • Part of the Very Short Introductions series - over ten million copies sold worldwide

About the Author(s)

Matthew Cobb, School of Biological Sciences, University of Manchester

Matthew Cobb is Professor of Zoology at the University of Manchester. He has a degree in Psychology and has studied the sense of smell in maggots and other animals for over 30 years. Since 2004, he has taught a final-year course at Manchester on Chemical Communication in Animals, which is the basis for this book. His favourite smells are the back of a baby's neck, and petrichor: the smell of soil in the summer after it has rained. In 2015, he was shortlisted for the Royal Society Book Prize for his book Life's Greatest Secret: The Race to Crack the Genetic Code (Profile Books, 2015).

Table of Contents

    List of illustrations
    1: How we smell
    2: Smelling with genes
    3: Animal olfaction
    4: Human smelling
    5: The future of smell
    6: Smelling to remember, remembering smells
    7: Chemical signals
    Further reading
    Index