What do houseflies really like?

Ross Drewe rd at labyrinth.net.au
Sun Aug 1 11:51:19 EDT 1999

On Sun, 25 Jul 1999 07:06:20 -0600, "rjb" <hobuss at worldnet.att.net>

>....  IIRC, the amino acid tryptophane, for
>example, is converted in the human intestine to methylindole (aka skatole)
>which has a distinct odor of feces.

IIRC, I saw an article in a popular science magazine a long time ago
(maybe 30 years) saying that skatole's reputation for faecal
smelliness, which dates back to last century, was undeserved.  The
article said that sufficiently pure skatole did not smell of faeces,
and that the smell was due to small amounts of an even more malodorous
impurity.  However, it's not my field either, so I haven't checked
this since to see if it's been confirmed.


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