Mammalian olfaction relies on active sniffing, which both shapes and is shaped by olfactory stimuli. Habituation to repeated exposure of an olfactory stimuli is believed to be mediated by decreased sniffing; however, this decrease may be reserved by exposure to novel odorants. Because of this, it may be possible to use sniffing itself as a measure of novelty, and thus as a measure of odorant similarity. Thus, I investigated the use of sniffing to measure habituation, cross-habituation, and odorant similarity.
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