why does cutting onions make people cry

does chopping an onion make you cry? Unstable
chemicals. Onions produce the chemical irritant known as syn-propanethial-S-oxide. It stimulates the eyes' lachrymal glands so they release tears. Scientists used to blame the enzyme allinase
for the instability of substances in
a cut onion. Recent studies from

proved that lachrymatory-factor synthase, (a previously undiscovered
enzyme) is the culprit (Imani et al, 2002). Lachrymatory-factor synthase is released into the air when we
cut an onion. The synthase enzyme converts the amino acids sulfoxides of
the onion into sulfenic acid.

The unstable sulfenic acid rearranges itself into syn-ropanethial-S-oxide. Syn-propanethial-S-oxide gets into the air and comes in contact
with our eyes. The lachrymal glands become irritated and produces
the tears! For
more print resources. onion,
lachrymal gland and crying or tears
in the. Inside the intact cells of an onion, a molecule called sulfenic acid precursor floats around the watery filler like a napping human in a lazy river. Also floating in that cytoplasm are little sacs called vacuoles, containing a protein called alliinase, which is like a little drill sergeant of the process.

БOne has not seen the other, but if you damage the cells, they can now meet and make these reactions,Б said, a biochemist at Case Western Reserve and principal investigator of the latest study. The molecule and the protein fit together perfectly, the chemical structure of the molecules change, and that lazy floater becomes a smelly soldier armed with tear gas. Only two other plants are known to contain LF: guinea hen weed, ( ) and (Allium siculum ), but youБre far less likely to encounter them.

By contrast, the average American eats about. That makes for a lot of onion sobbing. And while some people cry more than others, itБs unclear why. ItБs also unclear why some varieties seem to be more tolerable than others. Dr. Golczak said potency might depend on freshness, amount of LF produced or even a mutation that would alter LFБs activity. But is it possible to avoid the onion feelies? In Japan, scientists engineered a. But it lacks that signature onion flavor: БThe taste is completely different,Б Dr. Golczak said.

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