Gustatory functions, sodium appetite, and conditioned taste aversion survive excitotoxic lesions of the thalamic taste area.

Article date: 1997/6/1

PubMed ID: 9189278

Journal name: Behavioral neuroscience (ISSN: 0735-7044)


Rats with bilateral, electrophysiologically guided, ibotenic acid lesions of the gustatory thalamus (THLX) were tested for their ability to perform a variety of taste-guided behaviors. First, in daily 30-min sessions, the rats were given repeated 10-s access periods to a range of concentrations of sucrose, NaCl, or QHCl, plus water. Both the control and the THLX rats exhibited similar concentration-response functions, regardless of hydrational state. Next, on 3 trials, the rats were given 15 min access to 0.3 M l-alanine and then injected with LiCl (0.15 M, 1.33 ml/100 g body weight ip). All rats learned a taste aversion following 1 pairing with LiCl. Finally, on 3 separate occasions, the rats were injected with furosemide, and Na(+)-appetite was evaluated 24 hr later. All rats expressed an equivalent sodium appetite after the first furosemide injection, but only the control rats increased intake of 0.51 M NaCl with repeated sodium depletions. These observations reinforce prior data implying that an intact gustatory thalamus is not necessary for the expression of some taste-guided behaviors.

Author List: Scalera G, Grigson P S, Norgren R

Publication Types: Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

Substances mentioned in the article: Dietary Sucrose; Sodium, Dietary; Ibotenic Acid; Lithium Chloride;

Mesh terms: Animals; Appetite/physiology; Association Learning/physiology; Avoidance Learning/physiology; Brain Mapping; Conditioning, Classical/physiology; Dietary Sucrose/administration & dosage; Dose-Response Relationship, Drug; Drinking/physiology; Ibotenic Acid; Lithium Chloride/toxicity; Male; Motivation; Rats; Rats, Sprague-Dawley; Sodium, Dietary/administration & dosage; Taste/physiology; Thalamic Nuclei/physiology; Water-Electrolyte Balance/physiology;

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