Characterization of Chemical Constituents of Human Sweat: A Study Based on Indian Population

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Abstract

There is a strong evidence in the literature that human odor is unique to an individual; therefore, the focus of this study was to strengthen this evidence through the testing of sweat samples on unrelated individuals with the same ethnicity. Sweat samples were collected from 42 unrelated Indian males and females residing in the same city to determine the chemical constituents in human sweat. The volatile compounds of sweat were subsequently analyzed and identified using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry, and a National Institute of Standards and Technology library was used for individual profiling. A total of 78 compounds were identified in human sweat tested with 22 compounds found to be unique to the individual (frequency of occurrence one). A scent profile, or “chexmotype,” unique to the sweat of each individual was obtained. This is the first extensive study on an Indian population with 36 new compounds detected in human sweat.

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