Thursday Feb 8 12:42 AEDT
For women, apparently there's nothing like the smell of a man's sweat.
Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley said women who sniffed a chemical found in male sweat experienced elevated levels of an important hormone, along with higher sexual arousal, faster heart rate and other effects.
They said the study, published this week in the Journal of Neuroscience, represents the first direct evidence that people secrete a scent that influences the hormones of the opposite sex.
The study focused on androstadienone, considered a male chemical signal. Previous research had established that a whiff of it affected women's mood, sexual and physiological arousal and brain activation. Its impact on hormones was less clear.
A derivative of testosterone, it is found in male sweat as well as in saliva and semen. It smells somewhat musky.