First Advisor

Cord B. Sengstake

Term of Graduation

Winter 1972

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (M.S.) in Psychology






Glucose -- Metabolism, Animals -- Food, Animal nutrition, Animal feeding



Physical Description

1 online resource (iv, 44 pages)


Jean Mayer has postulated the presence of glucoreceptors located primarily in the ventromedial hypothalamic nuclei of the brain which are activated by glucose in the measure that they utilize it. According to Mayer, hunger occurs when glucose is not available for metabolic purposes and satiation supervenes when glucose is made available. Control of this mechanism rests with the glucoreceptors. These receptors are believed to be destroyed when an injection of the compound goldthioglucose is given to mice. These animals subsequently become obese and are found to have gold deposits and lesions in the ventromedial area and also in other parts of the brain.

If the glucoreceptors are destroyed and cannot respond to the presence of glucose in the blood, it would be predicted that food intake would not change with the glucose level. The purpose of this investigation was to see if the food intake of goldthioglucose injected animals is affected by a glucose injection.

One hundred and twenty mice were divided into four groups. One group, the controls, received no goldthioglucose. The other three groups received the following dosages: .5 mg. of goldthioglucose per gram of body weight, 1.0 mg. of goldthioglucose per gram of body weight and 1.3 mg. of goldthioglucose per gram of body weight. Fifty seven days after the goldthioglucose injection a training period began in which the mice were taught to consume their entire daily food intake during a 50 minute period. Then the experimental period began during which the animals were maintained on the 23 hour and 10 minute deprivation schedule. During this period the mice were given intraperitoneal injections of 60 mg. of glucose or normal saline on alternate days for ten days. The amount of food consumed in the 50 minutes beginning 15 minutes after the glucose or saline injection was determined.

Food intake of the goldthioglucose injected animals was not different than that of the controls under any factor of the experiment.

The results do not support Mayer's idea that the glucoreceptors as he describes them are destroyed by goldthioglucose.


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