Newborns nurse long-term memories of smells | Science News


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Newborns nurse long-term memories of smells

Odors babies encounter while breast-feeding remain favorites as toddlers

3:37pm, January 14, 2010

Within a week after birth, babies inhale new memories at their mothers’ breasts. Newborns who whiff a specific odor while breast-feeding, even if they smell it for only eight days, prefer that same odor over others a year or more later, reports a team led by physiologist Benoist Schaal of the European Center of Taste Sciences in Dijon, France.

Like other infant mammals such as rats and pigs, human newborns easily learn and remember smells associated with breast-feeding, the scientis

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