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A high-fat diet alters crucial aspects of brain dopamine signaling

Date:
July 19, 2010
Source:
Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior
Summary:
Prolonged exposure to a high fat diet is correlated with changes in the brain chemical dopamine within the striatum, a critical component of the brain's reward system according to new research.

Research to be presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior (SSIB), the foremost society for research into all aspects of eating and drinking behavior, finds that prolonged exposure to a high fat diet is correlated with changes in the brain chemical dopamine within the striatum, a critical component of the brain's reward system.

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The authors measured 'real-time' changes in dopamine levels after rats consumed a high fat diet for either 2 or 6 weeks. Compared to rats consuming a standard low fat diet, high-fat diet rats exhibited reduced dopamine release and also reduced reuptake by "dopamine transporters" within the striatum. Mitchell Roitman from the University of Illinois at Chicago says, "Previous research has demonstrated reduced dopamine transporter numbers in association with obesity and exposure to a high fat diet. Our research shows that these changes lead to major differences in the way dopamine functions in the brain."

The results from this study highlight the impact of diet on brain neurochemistry -- and in particular on brain systems that regulate motivation and willingness to work for food reward in rats as well as humans.

Research supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).

The lead author is Jackson J. Cone, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA. Co-authors are J.D. Roitman and M.F. Roitman, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA


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The above story is based on materials provided by Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


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Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior. "A high-fat diet alters crucial aspects of brain dopamine signaling." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 July 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100713011053.htm>.
Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior. (2010, July 19). A high-fat diet alters crucial aspects of brain dopamine signaling. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100713011053.htm
Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior. "A high-fat diet alters crucial aspects of brain dopamine signaling." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100713011053.htm (accessed October 24, 2014).

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