VMH Procainization abolishes cephalic phase insulin response

H. R. Berthoud, D. A. Bereiter, B. Jeanrenaud

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9 Scopus citations


In order to test the cephalic phase hypothesis of the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH) obesity syndrome [22], the saccharin-induced cephalic phase insulin response was quantified with and without prior microinjections of procaine-HCl into the VMH of freely moving rats. Saline control injections into the VMH did not change the cephalic phase insulin response observed after the ingestion of 2 ml of 0.15% Na-saccharin. The low dose of procaine HCl (2×15 μg) attenuated, and the larger dose (2×50 μg) completely abolished this insulin response. The possibility that the early insulin response and its suppression could be the consequences of an unspecific oral sensation, general arousal or motor behavior were ruled out by the observations that oral quinine stimulation did not produce a comparable insulin response, and that glucose-stimulated insulin secretion in anesthetized rats was also attenuated by VMH procainization. The results are discussed in the light of the apparent dissociation between the behavioral and endocrine effects of VMH procainization as compared to electrolytic lesions and electrical stimulation of the VMH.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127-131
Number of pages5
JournalBrain Research Bulletin
Issue numberSUPPL. 4
StatePublished - 1980

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Miss Dominique Rutschmann for her excellent techm-cal assistance and Mrs. Christiane McVeigh for typing the manuscript. This work was supported in part by Grdnt No. SR of the Swiss National Science Foundation, Berne. Switzerland. by Grant No. I ROI AM25220-01 of the National Institutes of Health. Bethesda, MD. USA. and by a grant-in-aid of Nestle S.A.. Vevey. Switzerland.


  • Cephalic phase insulin response
  • Hypothalamic hyperphagia
  • Hypothalamic obesity
  • Saccharin Quinine
  • VMH procainization


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