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Eurasian Journal of Anthropology
Volume 6, Issue 1 (June 2015), pp. 15-23

DOI: 10.12973/ejanth.2014.00042a

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Research Article

Published online on Jun 01, 2016

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Genetic variation in taste sensitivity to phenylthiocarbamide in six populations of Manipur, India

Ahsana Shah, Mohammad Afzal


Ability to taste Phenylthiocarbamide (PTC) a bitter compound is of genetic, epidemiologic, and evolutionary interest because the ability to taste PTC is correlated with the ability to taste other bitter substances, many of which are toxic. Our study was taken to determine PTC taste sensitivity among Manipuri Muslim males and females and discussed it with reference to variability and disease. Unrelated individuals of both sexes belonging to six populations were randomly selected and screened using serial dilution method of Harris and Kalmus (1949). The study was conducted with six populations viz. Sheikh, Syed, Pathan and Mughal, Meitei (Hindu) and Naga. Naga population shows the highest taster frequency in both males and females (males 90.59% and females 92.35%). While the least taster frequency were observed in Pathan population (males65.38% and females 62.86%). Females shows higher PTC tasting ability (χ2=62.028, df=5, P=0.00). The findings are discussed with reference to variability and disease. The frequency of PTC tasters is greater than non-tasters and the females have lower non-taster phenotypes as compared to males. Such type of study will provide background information about genetic structure of population studied and serves as useful interaction of genetics, food preferences and dietary patterns.

Keywords: Phenylthiocarbamide, Manipur, gene frequency, population, India

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