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Chem Senses. 2001 Mar;26(3):247-51.

Judgement of odor intensity is influenced by subjects' knowledge of the odor source.

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  • 1Institut für Medizinische Psychologie, Universität München, Goethestrasse 31, D-80336, München, Germany.


Odor perception, including intensity, is affected by knowledge of odor source. For 76 subjects tested with 24 everyday odorants, ratings of intensity, pleasantness and familiarity were enhanced when subjects either could identify the odor source themselves or were provided with the name by the experimenter. Ratings were highest when subjects judged that the names provided matched their own perception, suggesting an interaction between individuals' cognitive representation of odors and their immediate perceptual experience.

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