Supertaster Test Strips

Super Taster Test Strips

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Supertaster Genetics Lab Kits

Super Taster Test Strip Papers

Make your own super taster genetics lab kit with any combination of Indigo® PTC, thiourea, sodium benzoate & control test papers for taste testing. Use in biology lab experiments to identify the different genotypes by their distribution of dominant & recessive supertasting specific genes. Or, turn it into a fun activity. Your kids' food preferences could be genetic!

All come with 100 test strips/vial and a minimum guaranteed 3 year shelf life. Full documentation provided including a Stability Statement, Certificate of Analysis & SDS. Optional next day delivery for any quantity of most items.

Buy Indigo® test strips, the brand you can trust for accuracy & technical support. Call us on our toll free line for immediate assistance or e-mail us with your questions. 1 hour response is typical during business hours, M-F, slightly longer on weekends.

Indigo® Supertaster Test Strips

Taste test strips are mainly used in biology labs to help understand statistics as it relates to genetic variability. This information can be used in a very different & interesting way.

When people are asked to group themselves by perceived common values they do so by age, sex, race, etc. Since the genes for tasting follow a normal distribution across human populations, if you now group people by those results you will end up with a completely different mix that crosses all the other barriers. It's a great way to show that people have much more in common with each other than they thought & a greater appreciation for our diversity as a species.

What is a supertaster?

A supertaster senses flavors more strongly than the average person. They have many more taste buds and are particularly sensitive to bitter foods such as broccoli, spinach, coffee, beer, and chocolate. This characteristic is inherited by roughly 25% of the population, more often in women. Flavors we taste are broadly grouped as sweet, salty, bitter, sour & umami. Use Indigo® taste test paper strips in your supertaster quiz and find out if you, your family or friends have the supertaster gene.

The reason for our supertasting ability is unclear but sensitivity to bitter compounds may relate to our recognizing potentially toxic plant alkaloids since this trait is in ~75% of people who taste PTC. This may also be of benefit in avoiding spoiled foods. Read Expiration Dates Are Meaningless & why we evolved a disgust response

See the Scientific American article: Super-Tasting Science: Find Out If You're a "Supertaster"!. It even includes instructions on how you can compare the number of taste buds on your tongue to that of your friends.

Displaying 1 to 5 (of 5 products)
Taste Test Strip Bundle

Taste Test Strip Bundle

SKU: 33814-TASTE
$11.25USD or lower Each
100 PTC Supertaster Strips

100 PTC Supertaster Strips

SKU: 33814-PTC
$2.95USD or lower Each
100 Na Benzoate Taste Strips

100 Na Benzoate Taste Strips

SKU: 33814-NaB
$2.95USD or lower Each
100 Thiourea Taste Strips

100 Thiourea Taste Strips

SKU: 33814-TU
$2.95USD or lower Each
100 Control Paper Test Strips

100 Control Paper Test Strips

SKU: 33814-Ctl
$2.75USD or lower Each
More Information

This review from a happy customer:

"I've always been curious about using these taste test strips and I just wanted some for myself. Packs on Amazon for a few tests were the same cost or more than to buy from Indigo, but Indigo arrived just as fast as Amazon prime normally does! I was very happy with the purchase and grateful to be able to not have to worry about counterfeit strips on Amazon and support a good business. These were great!"

Indigo Taste Test Blogs

  1. PTC Taste Test Strips: Let's Talk Science Outreach
  2. Can Supertaster Testing Reduce Food Waste?
  3. Taste Testing with PTC (Phenylthiocarbamide)

Other Taste & Smell Material

  1. Super-Tasters and Non-Tasters: Is it Better to Be Average? Smell & taste together produce what we perceive as flavor.
  2. Taste Molecules - The Molecular Basis of Taste. From the Science of Cooking.
  3. The King of Fruits Needs a Deodorant. The Durian fruit has several stinky compounds: ethyl-2-methylbutanoate, 1-(ethylsulfanyl)ethane-1-thiol, ethionine. What would a supertaster experience?
  4. Use our Indigo® Instruments 3D Molecule Model Builder to compare the chemical structures of all the taste strip chemicals: phenylthiocarbamide (PTC), thiourea, sodium benzoate & 6-n-propylthiouracil (PROP).

The Myths of Human Genetics is an interesting read. It discusses topics that range from eye and hair color to dimples, attached earlobes & more. The section PTC tasting: The myth, is one of the most detailed we have encountered and is instructive to anyone involved with teaching taste test genetics labs.

To quote the conclusion in brief: ""PTC tasting is largely determined by a single gene...(but) there are other genes or environmental factors that influence PTC tasting. As a result, there is a continuous range of PTC tasting, not absolute separation into tasters and non-tasters. PTC tasting would be a fascinating subject for an advanced genetics class, but it does not fit the one-gene, two-allele myth well enough to be used to demonstrate simple Mendelian genetics."

You may be able to see details such as the fungiform papillae on your tongue with the naked eye. If not, try a regular 5X magnifying glass or a 5-10-15X geology loupe to see even more details.


How to use:

  • Take a strip out of bottle
  • Stick out your tongue
  • Press it against your tongue
  • Record response

All test strips are white so to randomize your experiment, mark each type of strip with a unique color code. 2 Ink felt pens could be used to add stripes at one end such as: black/black, red/red, black/red, red/black. Another method (but we haven't tried ) would be to remove the strips & add some food dye to the vial. Put the strips back in & let them soak up the dye. Remove again & set them out to dry.