Evaluation of Culturally-Familiar Odorants for a Persian Smell Identification Test

Seyed Kamran Kamrava,1 Maryam Jalessi,1 Shaghayegh Ebrahimnejad,1 Sahand Ghalehbaghi,1 Elahe Amini,*,2Alimohamad Asghari,1 Farhad Rafiei,1 and Mohammad Farhadi1



Processing odor information by the olfactory system depends greatly on the odor concentration. In order to use an odorant in a smell identification test (SIT), the minimum identification concentration (MIC) needs to be determined.

Materials and Methods:

This study was conducted in 60 healthy native individuals aged 20 to 60 years, selected from patients’ companions in a tertiary hospital. In the first step, 25 odorants were presented to evaluate familiarity among the subjects. Then, the MICs for the eligible odorants were measured using the ascending method of limits.


Out of 25 odorants, only one (cacao) was distinguished by less than 70% of the subjects, and was therefore removed from the list. The MICs of the remaining 24 odorants ranged from 6.87±۲٫۷۴% for menthol to 27.62±۱۸٫۹۸% for cantaloupe. There was significant correlation between age and the MIC only for coffee (P=0.02, r=−۰٫۳۰۰). There was a significant difference in MIC between men and women only for hazelnut (P=0.03).


We present the MICs of 24 culturally-familiar odorants in a sample of the Persian population in a SIT.

Key Words: Culture, Identification, Smell, Odorants