The role of hypothalamic peptides in consummatory feeding behavior
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Carter, K. and Lester, E. The role of hypothalamic peptides in consummatory feeding behavior. There are two components of feeding behavior that are highly regulated, an appetitive component, which involves the motivated acquisition of food, and the consummatory component, which involves the chewing and swallowing of food once it is in the mouth. Norepinephrine (NE), neuropeptide Y (NPY), and Agouti-gene-related protein (AgRP) were administered intracranially into the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) to examine the effects of these peptides on consummatory feeding behavior in the rat. Milk was subsequently infused intraorally through a chronic cheek fistula until rejected in order to measure the consummatory food intake. It was found that injection of NE, NPY, and AgRP all significantly increased intraoral intake. In conjunction with prior research, these findings suggest that NE, NPY, and AgRP all increase feeding. These results show that these peptides increase both the appetitive and consummatory feeding behaviors in response to intracranial injection into the PVN. Because all NE innervation of the PVN and approximately 50% of the NPY innervation arises from hindbrain NE and NPY neurons, the findings from this study are in agreement with other studies suggesting that the circuitry for consummatory ingestive responses is controlled in part by hindbrain mechanisms.