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Issue 22, 2015
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Human body odor discrimination by GC-MS spectra data mining

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The present study explores individual identity perception by analyzing the chemical peak information in the gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) spectra of body odor samples with standard data mining approaches. Mainly, the principal component analysis (PCA) method is chosen for the visual discrimination of the body odor samples in feature space. PCA in combination with the support vector machine (SVM) method is used for quantitative recognition. GC-MS characterization confirms the composition of numerous chemical species (aldehydes, acids, ketones, esters, sulfides etc.) in the body odor samples. The GC-MS spectra of body odor samples from the armpit and neck of three people (from dissimilar age groups) at two different sampling times (0 h and 4 h) were recorded in the experiment. A few blank (non-body odor) samples were also characterized with GC-MS and included as references in further analysis by the data mining methods. The discrimination efficiency (both qualitative and quantitative) for the individual body odors was evaluated for (i) three variables of chemical information in the GC-MS spectra (the peak area, peak height and ratio of peak area to height); (ii) two sampling times (0 h and 4 h); and (iii) two sampling parts of the body (the neck and armpit). The best visual discrimination of the individual body odors has been achieved using the peak height as a variable for the neck odor with a sampling time of 4 h. This result has been established with class separability measures calculated with principal component (PC) scores and SVM classification outcomes (86%).

Graphical abstract: Human body odor discrimination by GC-MS spectra data mining

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Article information

15 Sep 2015
04 Oct 2015
First published
08 Oct 2015

Anal. Methods, 2015,7, 9549-9561
Article type
Author version available

Human body odor discrimination by GC-MS spectra data mining

S. Kr. Jha, N. Marina, C. Liu and K. Hayashi, Anal. Methods, 2015, 7, 9549
DOI: 10.1039/C5AY02457A

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