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Obesity (Silver Spring). 2019 Apr;27(4):603-611. doi: 10.1002/oby.22415. Epub 2019 Feb 10.

Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy Attenuates Hedonic Feeding Without Impacting Alcohol Drinking in Rats.

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Laboratory of Endocrine and Neuropsychiatric Disorders, Division of Basic Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, Xavier University of Louisiana, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA.
Department of Integrative Physiology and Neuroscience, Washington State University, Pullman, Washington, USA.



Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery and vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG) are the most commonly performed bariatric procedures. Whereas studies report new-onset alcohol misuse following Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, the impact of VSG on alcohol intake is less clear. Hedonic feeding, alcohol drinking, and hypothalamic obesity-related gene expression following VSG were evaluated.


Male Long-Evans rats underwent VSG or sham surgery. To evaluate hedonic feeding, rats received a high-fat diet following behavioral satiation on chow. Alcohol (5%-10% v/v) drinking was assessed in a two-bottle choice paradigm. Finally, polymerase chain reaction array evaluated gene expression.


VSG induced moderate but significant weight loss. Sham rats significantly escalated high-fat diet intake following behavioral satiation, an effect significantly reduced in VSG rats. A moderate decrease in alcohol intake was observed in VSG rats at low (5%) alcohol concentration. However, overall, no significant between-group differences were evident. Key hypothalamic orexigenic transcripts linked to stimulation of food and alcohol intake were significantly decreased in VSG rats.


VSG attenuated hedonic feeding without impacting alcohol drinking, an effect potentially mediated by alterations in genetic information flow within the hypothalamus. Importantly, these data highlight VSG as an effective bariatric procedure with a potentially reduced risk of developing alcohol use disorder.

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