The folks at the American Chemical Society want us to be prepared for a zombie apocalypse. Since zombies — like those in “The Walking Dead” — are attracted to the smell of live humans, chemist Raychelle Burks suggests using chemicals to mimic the smells of rotting flesh, which should ward off living corpses in the event of a siege.
It sounds like it would really work for certain zombie futures. For example, characters in AMC’s “The Walking Dead” use jaw-less and armless zombies on leashes to camouflage their scent from other zombies.
The so-called “death cologne” would be made from a combination of three stinky molecules found in rotting flesh: putrescine, cadaverine, and methanethiol.
Dead human bodies naturally produce putrescine and cadaverine early in the decomposition process, Burks says in the video. Methanethiol provides the rotting-egg, cabbage smell.
By modifying the bacteria e.coli and growing them in large colonies in the lab, scientists can isolate the nasty-smelling compounds. All you need it a little genetically engineered bacteria and a petri dish!
You can learn more about the smelly solution in the video below, from the American Chemical Society’s Reactions series:
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