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Title: The role of dopamine in the pursuit of nutritional value
Authors: McCutcheon, James E.
First Published: 7-May-2015
Publisher: Elsevier Inc.
Citation: Physiology and Behavior, 2015, 152(B), pp. 408–415
Abstract: Acquiring enough food to meet energy expenditure is fundamental for all organisms. Thus, mechanisms have evolved to allow foods with high nutritional value to be readily detected, consumed, and remembered. Although taste is often involved in these processes, there is a wealth of evidence supporting the existence of taste-independent nutrient sensing. In particular, post-ingestive mechanisms arising from the arrival of nutrients in the gut are able to drive food intake and behavioural conditioning. The physiological mechanisms underlying these effects are complex but are believed to converge on mesolimbic dopamine signalling to translate post-ingestive sensing of nutrients into reward and reinforcement value. Discerning the role of nutrition is often difficult because food stimulates sensory systems and post-ingestive pathways in concert. In this mini-review, I discuss the various methods that may be used to study post-ingestive processes in isolation including sham-feeding, non-nutritive sweeteners, post-ingestive infusions, and pharmacological and genetic methods. Using this structure, I present the evidence that dopamine is sensitive to nutritional value of certain foods and examine how this affects learning about food, the role of taste, and the implications for human obesity.
DOI Link: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2015.05.003
ISSN: 0031-9384
eISSN: 1873-507X
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. This manuscript version is made available after the end of the embargo period under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license 
Description: The file associated with this record is under a 12-month embargo from publication in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behaviour

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