Sniffing out truffle scent

Genetics, not geography, plays key role in the aroma of the delicacy

By Roberta Kwok, 16:32 PM April 30, 2012

Chances are you haven’t eaten many truffles. Truffles are an aromatic, and some say delicious, part of a type of fungus that grows underground. Chefs consider truffles so valuable that a single pound of the prized food can cost thousands of dollars.

People have linked a truffle’s smell to its environment: the soil it grew in, the tree that nourished it or the weather. Now, scientists say that the secret to a truffle’s aroma is in its DNA, the genetic instructions inside cells that tell th...

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