HS Shivaprasad, PT Chaithra, P Kavitha, Suttur S Malini
Molecular Reproductive and Human Genetics Laboratory, Department of Studies in Zoology, University of Mysore, Manasagangothri, Mysore, Karnataka, India.
The main objective of this study is to find out the genetic variation and predisposition of overweight/obese, smoking/alcoholism and thyroid disease traits among tasters and non-tasters in Mysore population, South India. Bitter-taste perception for phenylthiocarbamide (PTC) is a classically variable trait both within and between human populations. Many studies have reported that in world population, approximately 30% of them are PTC non-tasters and 70% are tasters. This investigation was conducted during the year 2009-2010 involving a total 1352 study subjects and divided into three different groups, considering the age ranging from 13 to 50 years. Phenylthiocarbamide taste sensitivity was measured by administering a freshly prepared 0.025% of phenylthiocarbamide solution using the Harris and Kalmus method with a slight modification and the results were recorded. In the first group of 100 obese/overweight children, 28% are taster and 72% are non-taster and among 100 control group 67% are tasters and 43% are non-tasters. In second group, out of 1152 individuals 710 (61.63%) are tasters and 442 (38.37%) are non-tasters including both males and females. In the third group, out of each 100 thyroid patients and the control group, tasters are significantly more frequent (61.41%) than the non-tasters (38.58%) in the control group, but a higher proportion of non-tasters are recorded among individuals with thyroid problems (68%) compared to tasters (32%). There is a significant higher incidence of PTC tasters than non-tasters among general population in this study. As phenotypic variation in PTC sensitivity is genetic in origin, this may represent a surrogate risk factor for the development of multifactorial disease and disorders.
Keywords: Non-taster, obese/overweight, phenylthiocarbamide, smokers, taster, thyroid.