BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
    You are in: UK: Wales  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Education
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
 Friday, 24 January, 2003, 16:51 GMT
Lion urine used in stress research
Lioness's
People's reactions to different odours were measured
Lion urine has been used by a student from south Wales to study the link between smell and stress in humans.

David Reardon, 21, from Newport, who is studying biological sciences at Coventry University said that the project was a roaring success.

One person vomited after they smelt the lion urine

David Reardon, student

Urine taken from lions at Twycross Zoo in the west Midlands and other scents including roses, citrus and cinnamon were used in the experiment.

The aim of the research was to find out how stressed people became when smelling certain odours.

People taking part in the research were asked to smell unmarked containers which held t-shirts soaked in a variety of odours while their reactions were recorded.

"I wanted to do a project using the resources that were near me and there is zoo near Coventry, so I thought I would do a project using mammal scent," said Mr Reardon.

"I think the zoo thought it was a bit of a prank when I first asked them and I had to get written confirmation from my project supervisor.

"In a nutshell my research showed that women prefer sweeter smells and the men weren't that bothered.

"In the animal kingdom smells are used to assist in finding a mate.

Lion
Lion urine was used to determine the stress levels in humans

"Humans are animals and I wanted to see whether the same applied to the scent of men and women and also the different reactions to pleasant and unpleasant smells.

"I decided to include the scent of lion urine because lions are one of the biggest predators and I wanted to investigate the stress reaction felt by humans when they smelt this scent," he said.

Mr Reardon asked 16 people to smell unmarked sealed containers while he recorded their reaction, heart rate, blood pressure and immune response.

"Many of the women triggered an excited response when smelling the scent of roses and the men preferred the citrus fragrance," he said.

Unappealing

But the smell of lion urine did not appeal to the participants.

"One person vomited after they smelt the lion urine," he said.

Doctor Rubina Mian who led the stress research group at the university said: "I am delighted with the initiative David has shown in this project.

"I think Twycross Zoo were a little confused when David asked for some lion pee but they have been most helpful."


More from south east Wales

Click here to go to BBC Coventry and Warwickshire
See also:

18 Oct 02 | England
23 Aug 02 | England
22 Aug 02 | Science/Nature
03 Aug 02 | Africa
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Wales stories are at the foot of the page.


 E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Wales stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes