The effects of energy-rich diets on discrimination reversal learning and on BDNF in the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex of the rat

Scott E. Kanoski, Robert L. Meisel, Amanda J. Mullins, Terry L. Davidson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

200 Scopus citations

Abstract

Male rats received normal chow or high-fat diets rich in dextrose (HFD) or sucrose (HFS). Half of the rats received 90-day unrestricted access to their diet prior to training, whereas the other half were food restricted throughout the study. We evaluated the effects of these dietary manipulations on discrimination and reversal performance and on post-training levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in the prefrontal cortex and the ventral and dorsal hippocampus. Neither diet nor restriction condition affected discrimination acquisition. However, prior unrestricted access to the HFD diet impaired discrimination reversal learning and reduced BDNF in the prefrontal cortex and ventral hippocampus. Also, rats given the HFD diet responded more than controls to the previously rewarded cue at the outset of discrimination reversal. The results suggest that consumption of the HFD diet may have had enduring effects on learning processes, some of which may contribute to the control of intake regulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-66
Number of pages10
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Volume182
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 22 2007

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was done in partial fulfillment of the requirements for completion of a Master of Science degree by Scott E. Kanoski. The authors thank Jennie Mak, David Eagan, Andrea Tracy, Melissa McCurley, and Mamta Behl for their contributions. Support for this research was provided by National Institutes of Health in the form of grants R01 HD29792 (to T.L.D.) and R01 DA13680 (to R.L.M.).

Keywords

  • Dextrose
  • Diet
  • Inhibition
  • Macronutrient
  • Memory
  • Obesity
  • Rat

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