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Nitric oxide and l-arginine regulate feeding in satiated rats

Hazut, Noa, Rapps, Kayla, Kristt, Donald A., Susswein, Abraham J., Weller, Aron
Appetite 2019 v.132 pp. 44-54
Aplysia, animal models, arginine, hypothalamus, locomotion, motivation, nitric oxide, nitric oxide synthase, rats, satiety, staining, tissues
Nitric Oxide (NO) and its precursor l-arginine were found to inhibit feeding in rats with a low motivation to eat, as they do in Aplysia. In rats that are relatively satiated, treatment with an NO blocker increased feeding, and treatment with an NO donor or with either of 2 doses of l-arginine inhibited feeding. NO and l-arginine modulated several parameters of feeding, such as the total duration of appetitive behaviors, the time spent feeding, the quantity of food eaten and the number of feeding bouts. The inhibitory effect of l-arginine on feeding could not be attributed to changes in locomotion. These data indicate that satiation is partially mediated by increased production of NO. NADPH-Diaphorase histochemical staining, which is specific for tissues actively producing NO, showed significantly greater staining in satiated compared to hungry rats in all 4 hypothalamic nuclei (paraventricular and arcuate nuclei, lateral and ventromedial hypothalamus) that were examined. l-arginine may act as a regulator of feeding by controlling NO production in several hypothalamic nuclei, specifically under condition of a low feeding motivation.