Scientists perfect a microbiological recipe for artificial farts.

By Seriously Science | January 16, 2017 6:00 am
Image:Flickr/Ashley Taylor

Image:Flickr/Ashley Taylor

I don’t know about you, but after accidentally farting in a stranger’s face during a math lecture (don’t ask), I dream of a future where fart-neutralizing pants are readily available. But before we can design these desperately needed products, we must first develop realistic artificial farts with which to test them. That’s where these Danish scientists come in. They used common lab strains of different species of bacteria to develop a “recipe” that yields a realistic fart odor when grown anaerobically. Artificial fart scientists, we salute you!

Design of artificial foetor flatus based on bacterial volatile compounds.

“INTRODUCTION: Excessive flatulence can be a huge social problem. The purpose of this study was to design artificial flatus from bacterial volatile compounds to stimulate research into neutralizing measures.

MATERIAL AND METHODS: Anaerobic bacteria, representing a broad spectrum, from a recognized international culture collection were included. The strains were incubated in an anaerobic jar. After 24 hours the lid was removed, and the odour was evaluated by a specialist in clinical microbiology.

RESULTS: Four different anaerobic strains were chosen for further studies based on their individual odours. In total, seven different combinations of two or three strains were tested. The combination of Bacteroides fragilis ATCC 25285, Clostridium difficile ATCC 700057 and Fusobacterium necrophorum ATCC 25286 was chosen as it had a suitably foul odour.

CONCLUSION: It is possible to design artificial flatus from bacterial volatile compounds. The method is easy and inexpensive and can stimulate further research into neutralizing measures.”

Related content:
Rectal salami.
An unusual finding during screening colonoscopy: a cockroach!
High Altitude Flatus Expulsion (HAFE).
Farts: an underappreciated threat to astronauts.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: ha ha poop, Scat-egory

Seriously, Science?

Seriously, Science?, formerly known as NCBI ROFL, is the brainchild of two prone-to-distraction biologists. We highlight the funniest, oddest, and just plain craziest research from the PubMed research database and beyond. Because nobody said serious science couldn't be silly!
Follow us on Twitter: @srslyscience.
Send us paper suggestions: srslyscience[at]

See More


Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!

Collapse bottom bar