Conditioned preference for sweet stimuli in OLETF rat: Effects of food deprivation

Bart C. De Jonghe, Andras Hajnal, Mihai Covasa

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12 Scopus citations


The Otsuka Long-Evans Tokushima Fatty (OLETF) rat, an outbred strain of Long-Evans Tokushima Otsuka rat (LETO) that lacks CCK-1 receptor expression, is hyperphagic and develops obesity and type-2 diabetes. The present study sought to assess how OLETF rats alter intake, preference, and conditioned preference of palatable solutions after acute food deprivation. Our results show that after 24 h chow restriction, LETO rats increase both sucrose intake and two-bottle sucrose preference relative to their free-fed baseline, whereas OLETF rats do not increase sucrose intake (0.3 M or 1.0 M sucrose) or preference (1.0 M vs. 0.3 M sucrose) when they are food deprived. In contrast, OLETF rats exhibit a higher conditioned flavor preference when sucrose is used as unconditioned stimulus (US) relative to LETO rats, whether overnight food restricted (81% vs. 71% for OLETF and LETO rats, respectively) or free fed (82% vs. 54% for OLETF and LETO rats, respectively) during the test. When a noncaloric saccharin solution is used as US, OLETF rats show a higher preference for the saccharin-associated flavor relative to LETO rats when nondeprived (76% vs. 58% for OLETF and LETO rats, respectively); however, neither strain shows differential conditioned flavor preference for saccharin in the deprivation state during the test. These findings suggest that OLETF rats fail to integrate postabsorptive and orosensory effects of sucrose in a conditioning setting to influence intake. Thus, it appears that OLETF rats form preferences for sucrose based largely on orosensory and hedonic properties of the solution, rather than caloric value.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R1819-R1827
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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