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Re: Gingko berries as evidence of dino sense of smell?

Part of my idea, I think, is that the current model for olfactory receptors
is that they provide a king of "lock/key" for certain molecules.

Another way of putting it (sorry, I'm not a chemist) is that the scent
molecule has a certain shape and there must be a corresponding receptor
molecule in the nose of the being which intercepts the scent.

Following logically on that, one might suppose that if we know the molecule
that produces the scent, then we know the molecule or nerve receptor/molecule
pairing that would detect it.

Someone suggested that crocodiles love gingkos so that would suggest that
more ancient species would have similar receptors in the soft tissue portion
of a fossil that would not easily (or ever) be found.

So.. butyric acid on one side... and what sort of molecular receptor on the

Phil Bigelow wrote:

> On Fri, 04 Feb 2000 13:29:03 -0500 Dinosaur Interplanetary Gazette
> <dinosaur@dinosaur.org> writes:
> >Has anyone considered this idea and used it to extrapolate to the
> >sensory capabilities of our saurian friends?
> But since the Ginkgophyta goes back into the Permian (pre-dinosaur time),
> it is doubtful that the fruits evolved to be specifically desirable to
> dinosaurs.
> The bad smell of ginkgo fruit comes from butyric acid that is found in
> the fleshy coat.  SNIPPED

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