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Addict Biol. 2010 Jul;15(3):304-11. doi: 10.1111/j.1369-1600.2010.00216.x. Epub 2010 May 6.

Ghrelin increases intake of rewarding food in rodents.

Author information

1
Department of Physiology/Endocrinology, The Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, SE-405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden. emil.egecioglu@medic.gu.se

Abstract

We investigated whether ghrelin action at the level of the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a key node in the mesolimbic reward system, is important for the rewarding and motivational aspects of the consumption of rewarding/palatable food. Mice with a disrupted gene encoding the ghrelin receptor (GHS-R1A) and rats treated peripherally with a GHS-R1A antagonist both show suppressed intake of rewarding food in a free choice (chow/rewarding food) paradigm. Moreover, accumbal dopamine release induced by rewarding food was absent in GHS-R1A knockout mice. Acute bilateral intra-VTA administration of ghrelin increased 1-hour consumption of rewarding food but not standard chow. In comparison with sham rats, VTA-lesioned rats had normal intracerebroventricular ghrelin-induced chow intake, although both intake of and time spent exploring rewarding food was decreased. Finally, the ability of rewarding food to condition a place preference was suppressed by the GHS-R1A antagonist in rats. Our data support the hypothesis that central ghrelin signaling at the level of the VTA is important for the incentive value of rewarding food.

PMID:
20477752
PMCID:
PMC2901520
DOI:
10.1111/j.1369-1600.2010.00216.x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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