Umami, the missing fifth taste
By JOE O'CONNELL, cbbqa Past President
First posted August 24, 2001
As reported in Scientific American, researchers
are studying a taste receptor that may be responsible for a taste which
Japanese scientists call umami. The word means
"meaty" or "savory" in the Japanese language.
Scientists have isolated a receptor from rat tissue that binds to the
amino acid glutamate (part of MSG), which they propose underlies the umami
taste. Others however remain skeptical. They doubt that umami
constitutes a fifth major taste, as significant as sweet, sour, salty
Scientific American, "Making Sense of Taste"