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This Protein Makes Armpits Reek, and Scientists Want to Stop It

By Robert Preidt

TUESDAY, July 10, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Afraid to raise your hand because of embarrassing body odor? Here's some good news for you: Scientists say they're one step closer to conquering smelly armpits.

Researchers in England say they've identified a protein that enables bacteria in your armpits to take up odorless compounds in sweat and make it stink.

According to the investigators, it may be possible to develop new deodorants that target this protein, known as a "transport" protein.

Study co-author Gavin Thomas, of the University of York's department of biology, pointed out that underarm skin provides a hospitable home for bacteria.

"Through the secretions of various glands that open onto the skin or into hair follicles, this environment is nutrient-rich and hosts its own microbial community," he said in a university news release.

Modern deodorants work by inhibiting or killing many of those bacteria in order to prevent odor, Thomas explained.

"This study, along with our previous research revealing that only a small number of the bacteria in our armpits are actually responsible for bad smells, could result in the development of more targeted products that aim to inhibit the transport protein and block the production of body odor," Thomas said.

The new study was published online July 3 in the journal eLife.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more on sweat.

SOURCE: University of York, news release, July 3, 2018

Copyright © 2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=735466

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
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The list of medical terms above are retrieved automatically from the article.

Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
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