Smell Mapping: Using Your Nose To Retrace Your Steps

Professor Lucia Jacobs has found that people can create a map in their heads with scents as location markers. NPR replicates the experiment with a master sommelier, and discovers that olfactory navigation is lot more successful if you have a sophisticated nose.  Listen to the interview on "All Things Considered" with Professor Jacobs discussing olfaction.  Professor Jacobs is also partt of a team that was just funded by NSF, via the "Ideas Lab" competition on "Cracking the Olfactory Code" (, to study olfactory navigation.  The Jacob's lab is the largest of the three - 7 PI's and $6.4M to work together on a single problem.  Her award will cover navigation in humans and trained search dogs, as well as 3 diverse invertebrates (hermit crab, slug and cockroach).  To learn more about Professor Jacob's research, visit her website at: