Effects of hippocampal lesions on adaptive intake of diets with disproportionate amounts of amino acids

Philip M.B. Leung, Quinton Rogers

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12 Scopus citations


Bilateral double electrolytic overlapping lesions were placed in dorsal-lateral hippocampus of male 230 g rats, and their food intake responses to the ingestion of diets containing disproportionate amounts of amino acids were examined. Rats with such lesions and intact control rats maintained their normal intakes of the 6% casein basal diet or a threonine basal amino acid diet postoperatively. However, they exhibited marked initial food intake depression, similar to that of intact rats, when fed the threonine imbalanced amino acid diet. Also, animals with lesions in certain areas of the dorsal-lateral hippocampus showed facilitated adaptation to the amino acid imbalanced diet. Similar severe reduction in food intake with relative lack of adaptation were observed in both the intact controls and rats with hippocampal lesions when fed amino acid diets completely devoid of threonine. Initial food intake of rats with hippocampal lesions was inhibited drastically as was the case with the intact controls when fed a 75% casein high protein diet. All rats, either intact or lesioned, showed similar slow adaptation patterns with the prolonged ingestion of the high protein diet. The initial food intake responses and facilitated adaptation of the animals bearing lesions in certain areas of the hippocampus suggest that such areas are not crucially involved in the inhibition of food intake of rats fed disproportionate amounts of dietary amino acids. Rather, such areas of lesions in the hippocampus may play a role in a system governing the behavioral adaptation of the intake of amino acid imbalanced diets but not of diets containing amino acids in general excess. This would also indicate that different mechanisms control the intake of amino acid imbalanced diets and diets containing amino acids in excess.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)129-136
Number of pages8
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1979



  • Amino acids
  • Food intake
  • Hippocampal lesions
  • Protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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