Posts Tagged ‘Tristram Wyatt’

There’s no proof human sex pheronomes exist

March 14, 2015

There’s no scientific evidence that human sex pheronomes exist.  Belief in human sex pheronomes derives from a an inconclusive paper at a scientific conference sponsored by a perfume company.

A fragrance company named Erox supplied two scientists with molecules called androstadiene and estratetraenol, which it identified as “putative human pheronomes”.   The scientists determined that these substances, when injected into the human nose, caused a response in the human nasal passages, and published a paper in 1991 saying they could indeed be pheronomes.

Erox was founded by David Berliner, a former professor at the University of Utah.   The university and Luis Monti-Bloch, one of the two psychiatrists who did the study, owned stock in Erox.   The scientific paper was published at a 1994 scientific conference on mammalian pheronomes sponsored by Erox.   Monti-Bloch later went to work for Erox, which patented androstadiene and estratetraenol and incorporated them into its new perfumes and advertising campaigns.

In 2000, a respected scientist named Martha McClintock did a study indicating that androstadiene improved the mood of women and that estratraenol improved the mood of men, but neither her study nor the earlier study made the claim that they were human sex pheronomes nor cited any evidence they produced human sexual arousal.

Human pheronomes might exist.  It’s possible.  But at the present time, the scientific evidence is lacking.


How one perfume company misled scientists into believing in human sex pheronomes by Joseph Stromberg for Vox.  My post is a summary of the facts in this article.  (Hat tip to naked capitalism)