Nocturnal feeding pattern in the prepubertal rat: Influence of the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH)

Gary C. Sieck, Dwight M. Nance, Roger A. Gorski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Daily feeding patterns, food intake and changes in body weight of male and female prepubertal rats were observed across a period from 21 to 50 days of age. Light/dark differences in feeding were found for both males and females throughout the recorded period, with feeding occurring predominantly during the dark period. The light/dark difference in feeding behavior gradually increased as the animals developed. Bilateral lesions placed in the VMH of female rats at 21 days of age disrupted the light/dark differences in feeding behavior primarily by decreasing dark period feeding. These lesions further resulted in a period of hypophagia and retarded body weight gain as well as a delay in pubertal onset. These data indicate that prepubertal rats regulate their feeding behavior so that food intake occurs principally during the dark period and that the integrity of the VMH is necessary for this regulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)777-783
Number of pages7
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Volume23
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1979

Keywords

  • Body weight regulation
  • Feeding patterns
  • Food intake
  • Ventromedial hypothalamus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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