Document Detail

Behavioral discrimination between sucrose and other natural sweeteners in mice: implications for the neural coding of T1R ligands.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17942718     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
In taste bud cells, two different T1R heteromeric taste receptors mediate signal transduction of sugars (the canonical "sweet" taste receptor, T1R2 + T1R3) and L-amino acids (the T1R1 + T1R3 receptor). The T1R1 + T1R3 receptor is thought to mediate what is considered the fifth basic taste quality "umami." However, a subset of L-amino acids is "sweet tasting" to humans and appears to possess a "sucrose-like" taste quality to nonhuman mammals. This suggests, to varying degrees, that all of these compounds activate a single neural channel that leads to the perception of sweetness. The experiments detailed here were designed to test the ability of mice to distinguish between sucrose and various others sugars and L-amino acids in operant taste discrimination tasks. Mice had at least some difficulty discriminating sucrose from L-serine, L-threonine, maltose, fructose, and glucose. For example, when concentration effects are taken into consideration, mice discriminated poorly, if at all, sucrose from glucose or fructose and, to a lesser extent maltose, suggesting that sugars generate a unitary perceptual quality. However, mice were able to reliably discriminate sucrose from L-serine and L-threonine. Data gathered using a conditioned taste aversion assay also suggest that, although qualitatively similar to the taste of sucrose, L-serine and L-threonine generate distinctive percepts. In conclusion, it appears that some signals from taste receptor proteins binding with sugars and some L-amino acids converge somewhere along the gustatory neuraxis. However, the results of these experiments also imply that sweet-tasting L-amino acids may possess qualitative taste characteristics that are distinguishable from the prototypical sweetener sucrose.
Cedrick D Dotson; Alan C Spector
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Comparative Study; Journal Article; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience     Volume:  27     ISSN:  1529-2401     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Neurosci.     Publication Date:  2007 Oct 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-10-18     Completed Date:  2007-11-08     Revised Date:  2007-12-03    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8102140     Medline TA:  J Neurosci     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  11242-53     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Psychology and Center for Smell and Taste, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32611-2250, USA.
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MeSH Terms
Discrimination (Psychology) / drug effects,  physiology*
Nerve Net / drug effects,  metabolism*
Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled / metabolism*,  physiology
Sucrose / administration & dosage*,  metabolism
Sweetening Agents / administration & dosage*,  metabolism
Taste / drug effects,  physiology
Grant Support
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Ligands; 0/Receptors, G-Protein-Coupled; 0/Sweetening Agents; 0/taste receptors, type 1; 57-50-1/Sucrose

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