The ABCC11 gene (ATP-binding cassette transporter sub-family C member 11) encodes a protein involved in transporting molecules across cellular membranes. ABCC11 is important for the transport of lipophilic compounds, bile acids, conjugated steroids, and – important here – the substance in apocrine sweat and in earwax, thus causing body odor and wet earwax.
For people who have loss-of-function genetic variants, the transporter doesn’t work and doesn’t transfer the odor-causing lipids into your armpits. No body odor!
Check your genetic data for rs17822931 (23andMe v4, v5; AncestryDNA):
- C/C: wet earwax, body odor, and normal colostrum[ref][ref]
- C/T: wet earwax, somewhat less body odor
- T/T: dry earwax, no body odor, and less colostrum
Members: Your genotype for rs17822931 is —.
Want to learn more? ABCC11 gene: Ear wax and no body odor
*SNP stands for Single Nucleotide Polymorphism, which is when one of the nucleotide bases (the A, C, G, or Ts) is replaced by a different nucleotide base in a gene.
Want more quick bits about your genes? Read through all the Snips about SNPs.