Human Pheromones: but No VNO; No Erox; No Human Pheromone Sciences

By: James V. Kohl | Published on: April 3, 2012

There are now many clear indicators that human pheromones (e.g., a mixture of androstenol and androsterone, or of ‘copulins’) cause changes in human behavior. For example, see our freely available olfactory research conference presentation: Human pheromones, epigenetics, physiology, and the development of animal behavior. Human pheromones enhance your appeal, naturally.

For contrast, see:
Press release: Human Pheromone Sciences Files for Termination of SEC Registration
What this press release signals may end an era during which the concept of pheromones seems to have been bastardized by linking chemicals that have no effect on human behavior to physiological changes via a non-functional human vomeronasal organ (VNO). Indeed, what was initially called their “proof of concept” predicts no effect on behavior because there is no functional human VNO. The weak physiological effects they showed are predicted with exposure to any virtually any sensory stimulus even if exposure is not consciously perceived.
Since their ‘marketing concept’ is also what popularized the concept of human pheromones, it is with some regret that I view their ‘disappearing act’ from the human pheromone marketing scene. Clearly, the mob mentality is primarily interesting in sex, not science. No doubt, many marketers will continue to rely on their original misrepresentations of cause and effect to sell the plethora of different products with spurious claims of effectiveness. But it should be more difficult for them to continue to fool consumers who may now be better informed.
For example, it has become clearer in the past two decades (since 1991) that basic principles of biology and levels of biological organization are required to link sensory cause to effects on hormones and their affects on behavior. This is the biology common to species from insects to other mammals, and the molecular biology of cause and effect is predictably the same across the Creation of species from microbes to man. We can now hope that this accurate conceptualization of how human pheromones affect behavior may become accepted,  in the absence of conflicting pseudoscientific claims. Acceptance of the enhancing effects of human pheromones, for example, may lead to better treatments for neurodegenerative diseases, like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, prevention of autism spectrum disorders, and perhaps even to a vaccine for prevention of atherosclerosis and heart attack or stroke. If you decide to use human pheromones to enhance your appeal, you’re merely taking advantage of ongoing scientific research.
In that context, it may be purely coincidental that publication of my latest article in Socioaffective Neuroscience & Psychology on March 15, 2012 precedes the March 30, 2012 SEC announcement by only two weeks. But the announcement by Human Pheromone Sciences also could have been predicted by award-winning articles I authored in 2007, or co-authored in 2001, and even back to the first paper I co-authored in 1996 for the research journal Hormones and Behavior, which linked RNA-mediated events from the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA in the organized genomes of species from microbes to man via conserved molecular mechanisms of cell type differentiation.
Since then, it has become increasingly clearer that human pheromones, like the pheromones of insects, cause the changes in hormones that cause changes in behavior.  So ends the highly effective VNO marketing ploy! We can now continue with accurate representations of cause and effect that have been detailed across species from microbes to man. Androstenol, for example, causes change in luteinizing hormone and mood in women. Androsterone is a highly individualistic hormonal indicator of human male reproductive fitness. With or without sandalwood masking odor, this combination of active ingredients enhances the appeal of a man wearing the mixture. Women respond with increased flirtatious behavior that exemplifies what is common to all animals that are influenced by pheromones. No human VNO is required. Good riddance to the false claims and misrepresentations of sensory cause and effect!
Pheromones are like food odors. Not every food is equally appealing. But we can enhance individual appeal with pheromones just like we can spice up the appeal of food. The common principle is that food odors are naturally responsible for food selection; and that human pheromone-enhancement is naturally responsible for sexual selection. Of course this means that human pheromone enhancement may get you selected, naturally. But that fact is no marketing ploy; it’s a biological fact. In this context, my technical publications will assure most people that I am not a marketer. I am a medical laboratory scientist!

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