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Research Paper on Perfumery and Chemistry


rollagasper 5 / 4  
Mar 19, 2007   #1
Hi!
For chemistry class, I wrote a research paper on the subject of Perfumery and Chemistry. The essay itself it a bit long with diagrams and all, so I'd just like to get some advice on some sentences that I though might be awkward.

"Research has shown that many animal species secrete through their mucus small, water-soluble proteins called Odorant Binding Proteins (OBPs, see Fig. 2). These proteins occur in monomers or dimers and are theorized to have three possible intermediary roles between the binding of odorant molecules to olfactory receptors."

-> does the bolded part make sense? And should binding be plural?

"Natural fragrances are obtained from raw plant materials and animal secretions. There are currently five methods of extracting the fragrant-rich essential oils from natural materials; expression is a method used to extract scents from citrus fruits by pressing out the oils in their rind; in distillation, the plant is boiled and the resulting steam is allowed to condense, recovering droplets of scented oil; maceration is a process by which plants are steeped in vats of hot fats to form pomades; enfleurage is similar to maceration, except that it uses purified fats instead of hot fats; in extraction, the most commonly used and effective method, plants are soaked in a volatile solvent (e.g. benzene) and their oils are released into the liquid, which is then evaporated to obtain a strongly scented, waxy substance called concrete. These available methods allow fragrances to be extracted from various types and parts of plants, including flowers, leaves, roots, seeds, barks, resins, and fruits. "

-> is my use of semicolons a good way to organize this part? Should i separate the list with periods?

"Ethical issues are not the only impediments to the use of natural odorant compounds. Unpredictability and inconsistency of nature's products are often major obstacles; plants are affected by variables in their environment - such as temperature and soil condition - and the natural fragrances produced fluctuate in quality and quantity from year to year. Such inconsistencies in essential oils can lead to inconsistencies in perfumes. Synthetic fragrance compounds have become increasingly popular because they circumvent the problem of availability and variability. Some traditionalists in the perfume industry connote "synthetic" with "impure" and thus "inferior". Despite their zeitgeist rebuff of synthetics, the production of artificial fragrance compounds is the current focus of the fragrance industry."

-> Does this part flow well? Any awkwardness?

"Creating an evocative perfume goes far beyond mixing the juices of a bundle of flowers. This intricate task requires a solid understanding of chemistry concepts, a vast knowledge of fragrance materials, a clear vision and passion for creation, as well as a fine nose. Only then can a perfumer transform something seemingly repulsive - such as the greasy regurgitation from a whale or a damp piece of grey moss - into something pleasant to our noses. The boring or the ugly can be manipulated to create the sensually beautiful, and that is the true magic of perfumery."

-> I had the trouble of making the last line flow, especially the bolded part. Could you help me?

Thank you!

EF_Team2 1 / 1,709  
Mar 20, 2007   #2
Greetings!

What an interesting and informative essay! It can be difficult to make such fact-dense prose flow well and I think you've done a good job. I do agree with you that some of the parts you have concerns about could perhaps be made a little smoother.

"Research has shown that many animal species secrete through their mucus small, water-soluble proteins called Odorant Binding Proteins..." - What about saying "Research has shown that many animal species produce small, water-soluble proteins called Odorant Binding Proteins (OBPs, see Fig. 2). These proteins, which are secreted through the mucus, occur in ..."

"...occur in monomers or dimers and are theorized to have three possible intermediary roles between the binding of odorant molecules to olfactory receptors." - Would it be just as accurate to say "three possible intermediary roles binding odorant molecules to olfactory receptors"? Sometimes simpler is better.

In the paragraph with all the semicolons, I'd just use periods. Any time you're in doubt, leave semicolons out. ;-)

Some traditionalists in the perfume industry connote "synthetic" with "impure" and thus "inferior". Despite their zeitgeist rebuff of synthetics, the production of artificial fragrance compounds is the current focus of the fragrance industry." - I think "equate" would be more appropriate than "connote" here. I don't think "zeitgeist" is the proper word. It means "the spirit of the times" and what you are saying is that synthetics are the current thing, the "zeitgeist" if you will; therefore, the rebuff is more of an anti-zeitgeist.

I don't see a problem with your last line; I rather like it. :-)

Hope this helps!

Thanks,

Sarah, EssayForum.com
OP rollagasper 5 / 4  
Mar 20, 2007   #3
Thank you so much, Sarah!

I think I was trying to add some sort of literary quality to such a fact-based report, and that is why i went crazy with throwing in out-of-place words like "zeitgeist". :P

I never quite enjoyed writing science reports because the entire essay is facts followed by facts and i'm just falling asleep writing it. And to think, the teacher has to read almost 100 of these reports... o_O Although, I think the topic of the art and science of scent is so fascinating that writing this report was actually enjoyable.

Thanks again for all the help!

Amy


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