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AChems Press Release

Weight gain and diet selectively impair taste responsiveness

There is a complex relationship between taste and obesity. Being overweight reduces the taste of sugar while artificial sweeteners and bitter are inhibited just by diet.

Weight status affects food preference. However, it is not clear how body weight and diet each modify food preference. To answer this question, we gave some mice a high fat diet but restricted them from gaining weight. Other mice were allowed to gain weight on the high fat diet. We used live cell imaging and behavioral tests to measure the effects. Sucrose responses were reduced in both the taste cell responses and behavior in the overweight mice. Saccharin and bitter responses were reduced by diet alone, even when the mice did not gain weight. We conclude that there is a complex relationship between taste and obesity and in some cases, a high-fat diet alone is sufficient to impair taste. (contact Dr. Ann-Marie Torregrossa, amtorreg@buffalo.edu; +1 716-645-0354)

The poster presentation “Weight Gain And Diet Exposure Differentially Impair Taste Responsiveness.” (#P226) takes place Wednesday, 18 April, 9:00 – 11:00 pm ET in the Estero Ballroom.

Full author list: Laura E Martin, Bailey R Kemp, Kathryn F Medler, Ann-Marie Torregrossa