Smell is a fundamental and important sensory perception that operates at the molecular level. However, a fully molecular level understanding of the effect remains illusive.
There are currently two main proposed mechanisms: a mechanical one based on the behaviour of other GPCRs, in which the interaction between odorant and receptor leads to a shape change of the receptor; a vibrational one in which sensory perception is initiated by inelastic electronic tunneling between a donor and acceptor site facilitated by a nearby olfactant. There are arguments in favour of both, and experimental data can be used to support one theory or the other. However, our understanding is far from complete, and it is not yet possible to say definitively how olfactory receptors work, or even how many mechanisms are involved.
A TSRC workshop presents an opportunity to bring together key people who are engaged in active research in this field to assess our current level of understanding, and to discuss the merits and problems associated with all available theories. The aim is to work together to identify key questions that need answering, and experiments and calculations that could be performed to provide the needed information. If the meeting is successful, we plan to meet again to review progress.
We anticipate about 20-25 particpants from key groups working on this with about 50/50 mix between theory and experimental groups from both the US and outside the US. Lunch will be served on Monday.
A related upcoming CECAM workshop on this topic will be held in September.
Telluride Elementary School
447 West Columbia Ave Telluride, CO 81435
|Bittner, Eric||Univ. of Houston|
|Haase, Albrecht||University of Trento|
|Jang, Seogjoo||Queens College, CIty University of New York|
|Leitner, David||University of Nevada, Reno|
|Li, Hao||University of Houston|
|Matsunami, Hiroaki||Duke University|
|Roman, Gregg||University of Houston|
|Roman, Gregg [2nd Reservation]||University of Houston|
|Ryan, Kevin||The City College of New York|
|Solov'yov , Ilia||University of Southern Denmark|