The strongest-linked variant lies within a cluster of olfactory-receptor genes, which influence sense of smell. One of those genes, OR6A2, encodes a receptor that is highly sensitive to aldehyde chemicals, which contribute to the flavour of coriander [or cilantro]. This makes OR6A2 "a compelling candidate gene for the detection of the odours that give it its divisive flavour", the researchers write.
A study soon to be published in the journal Chemical Senses also found a link between coriander taste and genes for the bitter-taste receptor. However, scientists still say that "less than 10% of coriander preference is due to common genetic variants," and that "the heritability of cilantro preference is just rather low."
Read More: Soapy Taste of Coriander Is Linked to Genetic Variants | Nature
(Image: Inacio Pires/Shutterstock)