There has been considerable concern that diets high in refined carbohydrates promote human disease and obesity. Laboratory research has documented that high carbohydrate diets increase caloric intake, body weight, and body fat in animals, but the mechanisms responsible for these effects are not completely understood. New findings from my laboratory have revealed further complexity in carbohydrate appetite. First, we discovered that rats and other species have a taste and appetite for starch-derived polysaccharides distinct from their taste for sugars. Second, we demonstrated that the postingestive actions of carbohydrate can condition extremely strong flavor preferences even for normally avoided tastes (bitter, sour). The goal of this proposal is to further elucidate the postingestive conditioning of appetite by carbohydrates and to assess the impact of carbohydrate taste and conditioning on long-term energy balance.
The specific aims of the project are to (1) Evaluate the nutritive unconditoned stimulus (US) in carbohydrate appetite conditioning. The effect of carbohydrate type, concentration, and rate of infusion on conditioning will be determined. (2) Determine the site(s) and mute(s) of action of the carbohydrate US. Gastric, intestinal, and hepatic sites, and neural and hormonal routes will be investigated. (3) Evaluate the orosensory conditioned stimulus (CS) in carbohydrate conditioning. The role of olfactory and gustatory cues, and CS palatability in carbohydrate conditioning will be determined. (4) Investigate the behavioral and physiological processes associated with carbohydrate conditioning. Conditioning effects on ingestive patterns, the cephalic insulin response, and central neural coding of taste will be investigated. Also, carbohydrate conditioning and protein conditioning will be compared as will flavor-flavor and flavor-nutrient conditioning. (5) Determine the influence of carbohydrate taste and conditioning on long-term caloric intake, body weight and adiposity. This research, which involves the fields of psychobiology, nutrition, and gastrointestinal physiology, will provide new information on the interaction of taste and nutrition in the control of food selection, caloric intake, and body weight and adiposity.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)
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Biopsychology Study Section (BPO)
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Brooklyn College
Schools of Arts and Sciences
New York
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Sclafani, Anthony; Vural, Austin S; Ackroff, Karen (2018) Profound differences in fat versus carbohydrate preferences in CAST/EiJ and C57BL/6J mice: Role of fat taste. Physiol Behav 194:348-355
Sclafani, Anthony (2018) From appetite setpoint to appetition: 50years of ingestive behavior research. Physiol Behav 192:210-217
Spector, Alan C; le Roux, Carel W; Munger, Steven D et al. (2017) Proceedings of the 2015 ASPEN Research Workshop-Taste Signaling. JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr 41:113-124
Sclafani, Anthony; Ackroff, Karen (2017) Flavor preferences conditioned by nutritive and non-nutritive sweeteners in mice. Physiol Behav 173:188-199
Sclafani, Anthony; Vural, Austin S; Ackroff, Karen (2017) CAST/EiJ and C57BL/6J Mice Differ in Their Oral and Postoral Attraction to Glucose and Fructose. Chem Senses 42:259-267
Glendinning, John I; Frim, Yonina G; Hochman, Ayelet et al. (2017) Glucose elicits cephalic-phase insulin release in mice by activating KATP channels in taste cells. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 312:R597-R610
Ackroff, Karen; Sclafani, Anthony (2016) Flavor Preferences Conditioned by Dietary Glutamate. Adv Nutr 7:845S-52S
Sclafani, Anthony; Adamantidis, Antoine; Ackroff, Karen (2016) MCH receptor deletion does not impair glucose-conditioned flavor preferences in mice. Physiol Behav 163:239-244
Sclafani, Anthony (2016) Bypassing Intestinal Sugar Enhancement of Sweet Appetite. Cell Metab 23:3-4
Kraft, Tamar T; Huang, Donald; Lolier, Melanie et al. (2016) BALB/c and SWR inbred mice differ in post-oral fructose appetition as revealed by sugar versus non-nutritive sweetener tests. Physiol Behav 153:64-9

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