8-OH-DPAT elicits feeding and not chewing: evidence from liquid diet studies and a diet choice test.
Dourish CT., Clark ML., Iversen SD.
There have been recent claims that the 5-HT1A agonist 8-hydroxy-2-(di-n-propylamino)tetralin (8-OH-DPAT) elicits chewing and eating of solid but not liquid foods. Therefore, the effects of 8-OH-DPAT and another 5-HT1A agonist gepirone on the consumption of a liquid chow diet, by free feeding male rats, were examined. Both drugs produced a dose-dependent increase in the consumption of liquid diet during a 2 h test. The doses of 8-OH-DPAT and gepirone which increased liquid diet intake in this study were in the same range as those which were found previously to increase food pellet consumption by free feeding rats. The effects of 8-OH-DPAT were also examined in a feeding choice test in which free feeding animals were allowed to choose between food pellets and a liquid chow diet. In this test, 8-OH-DPAT significantly increased total food intake (liquid plus pellet) but had no significant effect on the consumption of either liquid or pellet diets when analysed separately. Thus, there were large individual differences in diet choice after 8-OH-DPAT injection. However, rats did not consistently choose to eat food pellets rather than the liquid diet, as would be predicted if the drug elicited chewing rather than eating. These results provide strong evidence that 8-OH-DPAT elicits a behaviourally specific hyperphagia and not chewing or gnawing.