Publications by authors named "Elodie le Berre"

5 Publications

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From sterile labs to rich VR: Immersive multisensory context critical for odors to induce motivated cleaning behavior.

Behav Res Methods 2020 08;52(4):1657-1670

Department of Psychology, Utrecht University, PO Box 80140, 3508 TC, Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Extending traditional research methods for studying the effects of odor on behavior, this study applied virtual reality (VR) to create a real-world, immersive context that was compared with a traditional sterile, non-immersive lab setting. Using precise odor administration with olfactometry, participants were exposed to three odors (cleaning-related pleasant smell, cleaning-unrelated pleasant smell: vanillin, and odorless air). Our aim was to tease apart whether participants' motivation to clean was driven by cleaning associations and/or odor pleasantness, and how context would accentuate these effects. The results indeed showed that, in VR only, the cleaning-related smell elicited faster and more energetic cleaning behavior on a custom-designed cleaning task, and faster and more voluminous olfactory sampling compared with controls (vanillin, air). These effects were not driven by odor valence, given the general absence of significant differences between the pleasant control odor vanillin and odorless air. In sum, combining rigorous experimental control with high ecological validity, this research shows the context dependency of (congruent) odors affecting motivated behavior in an immersive context only.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3758/s13428-019-01341-yDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7406481PMC
August 2020

The perception of odor objects in everyday life: a review on the processing of odor mixtures.

Front Psychol 2014 2;5:504. Epub 2014 Jun 2.

Centre des Sciences du Goût et de l'Alimentation, CNRS UMR6265, INRA UMR1324, Université de Bourgogne Dijon, France.

Smelling monomolecular odors hardly ever occurs in everyday life, and the daily functioning of the sense of smell relies primarily on the processing of complex mixtures of volatiles that are present in the environment (e.g., emanating from food or conspecifics). Such processing allows for the instantaneous recognition and categorization of smells and also for the discrimination of odors among others to extract relevant information and to adapt efficiently in different contexts. The neurophysiological mechanisms underpinning this highly efficient analysis of complex mixtures of odorants is beginning to be unraveled and support the idea that olfaction, as vision and audition, relies on odor-objects encoding. This configural processing of odor mixtures, which is empirically subject to important applications in our societies (e.g., the art of perfumers, flavorists, and wine makers), has been scientifically studied only during the last decades. This processing depends on many individual factors, among which are the developmental stage, lifestyle, physiological and mood state, and cognitive skills; this processing also presents striking similarities between species. The present review gathers the recent findings, as observed in animals, healthy subjects, and/or individuals with affective disorders, supporting the perception of complex odor stimuli as odor objects. It also discusses peripheral to central processing, and cognitive and behavioral significance. Finally, this review highlights that the study of odor mixtures is an original window allowing for the investigation of daily olfaction and emphasizes the need for knowledge about the underlying biological processes, which appear to be crucial for our representation and adaptation to the chemical environment.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00504DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4040494PMC
June 2014

Proportion of odorants impacts the configural versus elemental perception of a binary blending mixture in newborn rabbits.

Chem Senses 2011 Oct 26;36(8):693-700. Epub 2011 May 26.

CNRS, Centre des Sciences du Goût, Equipe Ethologie Développementale et Psychologie Cognitive, Dijon, France.

Processing of odor mixtures by neonates is weakly understood. Previous studies showed that a binary mixture of ethyl isobutyrate/ethyl maltol (odorants A/B) blends in newborn rabbits at the 30/70 ratio: Pups would perceive a configural odor in addition to the components' odors. Here, we investigated whether the emergence of this additional odor in AB is determined by specific ratio(s) of A and B. To that goal, we tested whether pups discriminated between AB mixtures with lower (A(-)B, 8/92 ratio) or higher (A(+)B, 68/32) proportion of A. In Experiment 1, pups conditioned to A (or B) responded to A(-)B and A(+)B but not to AB. In Experiment 2, pups responded to A(-)B after learning of A(-) (and to A(+)B after learning of A(+)) but not to AB. In Experiment 3, after conditioning to A(-)B pups responded to A(-) and B (and to A(+) and B after learning of A(+)B) but not or less to AB. In Experiment 4, pups responded to A(-)B and A(+)B after conditioning to AB. These results confirm the configural perception of certain odor mixtures by young organisms and reveal that the proportion of components is a key factor influencing their coding, recognition, and discrimination of complex stimuli.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/chemse/bjr049DOI Listing
October 2011

Perception of odor blending mixtures in the newborn rabbit.

Physiol Behav 2008 Sep 3;95(1-2):194-9. Epub 2008 Jun 3.

Centre Européen des Sciences du Goût, Equipe d'Ethologie et de Psychobiologie Sensorielle, UMR 5170 CNRS/UB/INRA, Dijon 21000, France.

In adult mammals, the processing of complex odor mixtures is elemental or configural. Here, we challenged these processes in newborn rabbits, in evaluating their perception of a binary odor mixture for which perceptual blending occurs in humans. This model of newborn animal was interesting since general questions remain on how odor cues are processed in immature organisms, and since rabbit pups present abilities of rapid odor learning. In the present study, we first demonstrated (Exp. 1) that rabbit pups rapidly acquired the odor of the binary mixture through associative conditioning (when the mammary pheromone was used as unconditioned stimulus). Then, we compared how they responded to the mixture, its components and the mammary pheromone, after they had learned the mixture or one of its constituents. After they had learned the odor of the mixture, they responded to its odor and the odor of its constituents (Exp. 2). However, after they had learned one constituent's odor, they responded to this odor but not to the mixture's odor (Exp. 3). The response to the mixture appeared nevertheless when pups successively acquired the odor of the two components (Exp. 4). Therefore, both elemental and configural processing of the mixture seem to be displayed by rabbit pups, suggesting that neonatal perception of a simple odor mixture may involve more than the perception of its constituents.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.physbeh.2008.05.018DOI Listing
September 2008

Perceptual processing strategy and exposure influence the perception of odor mixtures.

Chem Senses 2008 Feb 10;33(2):193-9. Epub 2007 Dec 10.

Universite de Bourgogne, Dijon Cedex, France.

In flavor perception, both experience with the components of odor/taste mixtures and the cognitive strategy used to examine the interactions between the components influence the overall mixture perception. However, the effect of these factors on odor mixtures perception has never been studied. The present study aimed at evaluating whether 1) previous exposure to the odorants included in a mixture or 2) the synthetic or analytic strategy engaged during odorants mixture evaluation determines odor representation. Blending mixtures, in which subjects perceived a unique quality distinct from those of components, were chosen in order to induce a priori synthetic perception. In the first part, we checked whether the chosen mixtures presented blending properties for our subjects. In the second part, 3 groups of participants were either exposed to the odorants contributing to blending mixtures with a "pineapple" or a "red cordial" odor or nonexposed. In a following task, half of each group was assigned to a synthetic or an analytical task. The synthetic task consisted of rating how typical (i.e., representative) of the target odor name (pineapple or red cordial) were the mixtures and each of their components. The analytical task consisted of evaluating these stimuli on several scales labeled with the target odor name and odor descriptors of the components. Previous exposure to mixture components was found to decrease mixture typicality but only for the pineapple blending mixture. Likewise, subjects engaged in an analytical task rated both blending mixtures as less typical than did subjects engaged in a synthetic task. This study supports a conclusion that odor mixtures can be perceived either analytically or synthetically according to the cognitive strategy engaged.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/chemse/bjm080DOI Listing
February 2008
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