Orosensory detection of sucrose, maltose, and glucose is severely impaired in mice lacking T1R2 or T1R3, but Polycose sensitivity remains relatively normal

Yada Treesukosol, Alan C. Spector

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Evidence in the literature supports the hypothesis that the T1R2+3 heterodimer binds to compounds that humans describe as sweet. Here, we assessed the necessity of the T1R2 and T1R3 subunits in the maintenance of normal taste sensitivity to carbohydrate stimuli. We trained and tested water-restricted T1R2 knockout (KO), T1R3 KO and their wild-type (WT) same-sex littermate controls in a two-response operant procedure to sample a fluid and differentially respond on the basis of whether the stimulus was water or a tastant. Correct responses were reinforced with water and incorrect responses were punished with a time-out. Testing was conducted with a modified descending method of limits procedure across daily 25-min sessions. Both KO groups displayed severely impaired performance and markedly decreased sensitivity when required to discriminate water from sucrose, glucose, or maltose. In contrast, when Polycose was tested, KO mice had normal EC 50 values for their psychometric functions, with some slight, but significant, impairment in performance. Sensitivity to NaCl did not differ between these mice and their WT controls. Our findings support the view that the T1R2+3 heterodimer is the principal receptor that mediates taste detection of natural sweeteners, but not of all carbohydrate stimuli. The combined presence of T1R2 and T1R3 appears unnecessary for the maintenance of relatively normal sensitivity to Polycose, at least in this task. Some detectability of sugars at high concentrations might be mediated by the putative polysaccharide taste receptor, the remaining T1R subunit forming either a homodimer or heteromer with another protein(s), or nontaste orosensory cues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R218-R235
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Volume303
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 15 2012

Keywords

  • Gustatory system
  • Polysaccharide taste
  • Sweet taste
  • Tas1r2
  • Tas1r3

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

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