Altered lipid and salt taste responsivity in ghrelin and GOAT null mice
Faculty of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Veterinary Sciences . Biomedical Sciences
Engineering sciences. Technology
, 14 p.
Taste perception plays an important role in regulating food preference, eating behavior and energy homeostasis. Taste perception is modulated by a variety of factors, including gastric hormones such as ghrelin. Ghrelin can regulate growth hormone release, food intake, adiposity, and energy metabolism. Octanoylation of ghrelin by ghrelin O-acyltransferase (GOAT) is a specific post-translational modification which is essential for many biological activities of ghrelin. Ghrelin and GOAT are both widely expressed in many organs including the gustatory system. In the current study, overall metabolic profiles were assessed in wild-type (WT), ghrelin knockout (ghrelin(-/-)), and GOAT knockout (GOAT(-/-)) mice. Ghrelin(-/-) mice exhibited decreased food intake, increased plasma triglycerides and increased ketone bodies compared to WT mice while demonstrating WT-like body weight, fat composition and glucose control. In contrast GOAT(-/-) mice exhibited reduced body weight, adiposity, resting glucose and insulin levels compared to WT mice. Brief access taste behavioral tests were performed to determine taste responsivity in WT, ghrelin(-/-) and GOAT(-/-) mice. Ghrelin and GOAT null mice possessed reduced lipid taste responsivity. Furthermore, we found that salty taste responsivity was attenuated in ghrelin(-/-) mice, yet potentiated in GOAT(-/-) mice compared to WT mice. Expression of the potential lipid taste regulators Cd36 and Gpr120 were reduced in the taste buds of ghrelin and GOAT null mice, while the salt-sensitive ENaC subunit was increased in GOAT(-/-) mice compared with WT mice. The altered expression of Cd36, Gpr120 and ENaC may be responsible for the altered lipid and salt taste perception in ghrelin(-/-) and GOAT(-/-) mice. The data presented in the current study potentially implicates ghrelin signaling activity in the modulation of both lipid and salt taste modalities.