Support Provided ByLearn More
Body + BrainBody & Brain

A Gene for Fish Odor

British scientists have developed a genetic test for a disorder that causes people to emit an unusual body odor: The gene causes sufferers to smell like rotten fish. For those who have been ostracized—shunned by friends and unable to hold jobs because they are perceived as unhygienic—the test offers some solace. But one patient says the genetic discovery has not changed his life as much as he had hoped for.

ByAri DanielNova

Major funding for NOVA is provided by the David H. Koch Fund for Science, the NOVA Science Trust, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and PBS viewers.