Modification of behavioral and neural taste responses to NaCl in C57BL/6 mice: effects of NaCl exposure and DOCA treatment.
To investigate the possible role of peripheral gustatory responsiveness to changes in NaCl acceptance, we studied NaCl consumption and the chorda tympani nerve responses to lingual application of NaCl in C57BL/6ByJ mice. The mice were treated with 300 mM NaCl (given to drink in 96-h two-bottle tests with water) or with injections of deoxycorticosterone acetate (DOCA; 33 mg/kg daily). Naive mice were neutral to 75 mM NaCl, but mice previously exposed to 300 mM NaCl avoided 75 mM NaCl. The NaCl-exposed (300 mM for 4 days and 75 mM for 2 days) mice had enhanced amiloride-sensitive components of the chorda tympani responses to 10-30 mM NaCl applied at room temperature (24 degrees C). DOCA injections increased acceptance of 300 mM NaCl, but did not change the chorda tympani responses to 100-1000 mM NaCl. However, the DOCA-treated mice had enhanced amiloride-sensitive components of the chorda tympani responses to cold (12 degrees C) 10-30 mM NaCl. These data suggest that peripheral gustatory responsiveness possibly contributes to the NaCl aversion induced by exposure to concentrated NaCl, but not to the DOCA-induced increase of NaCl acceptance. (+info)
Serum leptin is associated with the perception of palatability during a standardized high-carbohydrate breakfast test.
Leptin is an adipocyte-derived signalling molecule which plays a key role in the regulation of body weight and energy expenditure. Since its involvement in human eating behaviour is still poorly understood, we investigated whether the perception of palatability of food was related to fasting serum leptin levels. Twenty-six non-diabetic subjects, six men and twenty women of widely ranging age and body mass index, performed a standardized high-carbohydrate breakfast test. Palatability was evaluated with a visual analogue scale, body composition by bioelectrical impedance, serum leptin and plasma insulin by radioimmunoassay. Palatability was correlated to fasting serum leptin levels independently of body mass index, body fat mass and percentage of body fat (P<0.01). No significant relation was observed with peaks of insulinaemia, integrated concentrations of insulin or insulin resistance indices. A stepwise regression analysis indicated that serum leptin gave the strongest predictive association with palatability. These results suggest that the leptin system may be involved in the regulation of human eating behaviour in relation to the perception of palatability of food. (+info)
Glossopharyngeal nerve transection eliminates quinine-stimulated fos-like immunoreactivity in the nucleus of the solitary tract: implications for a functional topography of gustatory nerve input in rats.
The relationship between specific gustatory nerve activity and central patterns of taste-evoked neuronal activation is poorly understood. To address this issue within the first central synaptic relay in the gustatory system, we examined the distribution of neurons in the nucleus of the solitary tract (NST) activated by the intraoral infusion of quinine using Fos immunohistochemistry in rats with bilateral transection of the chorda tympani (CTX), bilateral transection of the glossopharyngeal nerve (GLX), or combined neurotomy (DBLX). Compared with nonstimulated and water-stimulated controls, quinine evoked significantly more Fos-like-immunoreactive (FLI) neurons across the rostrocaudal extent of the gustatory NST (gNST), especially within its dorsomedial portion (subfield 5). Although the somatosensory aspects of fluid stimulation contributed to the observed increase in FLI neurons, the elevated number and spatial distribution of FLI neurons in response to quinine were remarkably distinguishable from those in response to water. GLX and DBLX produced a dramatic attenuation of quinine-evoked FLI neurons and a shift in their spatial distribution such that their number and pattern were indiscernable from those observed in water-stimulated controls. Although CTX had no effect on the number of quinine-evoked FLI neurons within subfield 5 at intermediate levels of the gNST, it produced intermediate effects elsewhere; yet, the spatial distribution of the quinine-evoked FLI neurons was not altered by CTX. These findings suggest that the GL provides input to all FLI neurons responsive to quinine, however, some degree of convergence with CT input apparently occurs in this subpopulation of neurons. Although the role of these FLI neurons in taste-guided behavioral responses to quinine remains speculative, their possible function in oromotor reflex control is considered. (+info)
The perceived intensity of caffeine aftertaste: tasters versus nontasters.
The length and intensity of the aftertaste of caffeine was measured in groups of tasters and nontasters in order to determine if any differential information could be provided by aftertaste perception. Results indicate that a period of 4 min is sufficient to see differences between tasters and nontasters, and that nontasters' aftertaste of the saturated solution is equal in intensity with tasters perception immediately after stimulus presentation, but then after approximately 1 min fade faster. Nontaster ratings for the weaker solution were lower throughout the entire time period. (+info)
Taste qualities of solutions preferred by hamsters.
Molecules of diverse chemical structure are sweet to humans and several lines of evidence (genetic, physiological, behavioral) suggest that there may be distinct sweet perceptual qualities. To address how many perceptual categories these molecules elicit in hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus), we studied patterns of generalization of conditioned taste aversions for seven sweeteners: 100 mM sucrose, 320 mM maltose, 32 mM D-phenylalanine, 3.2 mM sodium saccharin, 16 mM calcium cyclamate, 10 mM dulcin and 32 mM sodium m-nitrobenzene sulfonate. Each stimulus was preferred versus water in two-bottle intake tests and stimulated the chorda tympani nerve. For each of seven experimental groups the conditional stimulus (CS) was a sweetener and for the control group the CS was water. Apomorphine.HCl was injected i.p. after a CS was sampled and, after recovery, test stimuli (TS) were presented for 1 h daily. The intake (ml) of each TS consumed by experimental animals was compared with mean TS intake by the control group. Learned aversions for 18/21 stimulus pairs cross-generalized, resulting in a single cluster of generalization patterns for the seven stimuli. Cross-generalization failures (maltose-cyclamate, maltose-sucrose, cyclamate-NaNBS) may be the consequence of particular stimulus features (e.g. salience, cation taste), rather than the absence of a 'sucrose-like' quality. The results are consistent with a single hamster perceptual quality for a diverse set of chemical structures that are sweet to humans. (+info)
Possible novel mechanism for bitter taste mediated through cGMP.
Taste is the least understood among sensory systems, and bitter taste mechanisms pose a special challenge because they are elicited by a large variety of compounds. We studied bitter taste signal transduction with the quench-flow method and monitored the rapid kinetics of the second messenger guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cGMP) production and degradation in mouse taste tissue. In response to the bitter stimulants, caffeine and theophylline but not strychnine or denatonium cGMP levels demonstrated a rapid and transient increase that peaked at 50 ms and gradually declined throughout the following 4.5 s. The theophylline- and caffeine-induced effect was rapid, transient, concentration dependent and gustatory tissue-specific. The effect could be partially suppressed in the presence of the soluble guanylyl cyclase (GC) inhibitor 10 microM ODQ and 30 microM methylene blue but not 50 microM LY 83583 and boosted by nitric oxide donors 25 microM NOR-3 or 100 microM sodium nitroprusside. The proposed mechanism for this novel cGMP-mediated bitter taste signal transduction is cGMP production partially by the soluble GC and caffeine-induced inhibition of one or several phosphodiesterases. (+info)
A non-pungent triprenyl phenol of fungal origin, scutigeral, stimulates rat dorsal root ganglion neurons via interaction at vanilloid receptors.
1. A [3H]-resiniferatoxin (RTX) binding assay utilizing rat spinal cord membranes was employed to identify novel vanilloids in a collection of natural products of fungal origin. Of the five active compounds found (scutigeral, acetyl-scutigeral, ovinal, neogrifolin, and methyl-neogrifolin), scutigeral (Ki=19 microM), isolated from the edible mushroom Albatrellus ovinus, was selected for further characterization. 2. Scutigeral induced a dose-dependent 45Ca uptake by rat dorsal root ganglion neurons with an EC50 of 1.6 microM, which was fully inhibited by the competitive vanilloid receptor antagonist capsazepine (IC50=5.2 microM). 3. [3H]-RTX binding isotherms were shifted by scutigeral (10-80 microM) in a competitive manner. The Schild plot of the data had a slope of 0.8 and gave an apparent Kd estimate for scutigeral of 32 microM. 4. Although in the above assays scutigeral mimicked capsaicin, it was not pungent on the human tongue up to a dose of 100 nmol per tongue, nor did it provoke protective wiping movements in the rat (up to 100 microM) upon intraocular instillation. 5. In accord with being non-pungent, scutigeral (5 microM) did not elicit a measurable inward current in isolated rat dorsal root ganglion neurons under voltage-clamp conditions. It did, however, reduce the proportion of neurons (from 61 to 15%) that responded to a subsequent capsaicin (1 microM) challenge. In these neurons, scutigeral both delayed (from 27 to 72 s) and diminished (from 5.0 to 1.9 nA) the maximal current evoked by capsaicin. 6. In conclusion, scutigeral and its congeners form a new chemical class of vanilloids, the triprenyl phenols. Scutigeral promises to be a novel chemical lead for the development of orally active, non-pungent vanilloids. (+info)
Reduced urination rate while drinking beer with an unpleasant taste and off-flavor.
A lowered subjective evaluation of the taste and flavor of beer due to staleness or to the addition of an unpleasant taste and flavor was found to be closely correlated with the urination rate. Beer in the same lot was compared immediately after shipment from the brewery and after leaving at room temperature for 1 month or 5 months. Each beer sample was given to volunteers at the rate of 3 ml/kg/15 min for 2 hours, and the urine volume was measured every 30 minutes. The urination rate was highest from the volunteers who drank fresh beer and lowest from those who drank 5-month-old beer. The subjective evaluation of both the taste and drinkability of 5-month-old beer was significantly lower than that of fresh beer. Beer samples with various unpleasant taste and flavor substances added lowered the urination rate. The results suggest that the perception of an unpleasant taste and off-flavor would lower the urination rate. (+info)