Retronasal perception of odors is often overlooked as a key metric

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. 2012 Nov 5;107(4):484-7.

doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2012.03.001. Epub 2012 Mar 8.

Retronasal Perception of Odors



We perceive odors orthonasally during sniffing; in contrast, we perceive odors retronasally during eating when they enter the nose through the pharynx.

There are clear differences between orthonasal and retronasal olfaction in neuronal processing and perception, so that these two pathways convey two distinct sensory signals.

The perception of foods is based on the interaction between ortho- and retronasal smell, taste, trigeminal activation and texture, so it is difficult to investigate one of these factors in isolation.

Specific clinical aspects include effects of retronasal olfaction on satiation and swallowing.