A recent study indicated that CAST/EiJ and C57BL/6J mice differ in their taste preferences for maltodextrin but display similar sucrose preferences. The present study revealed strain differences in preferences for the constituent sugars of sucrose. Whereas B6 mice preferred 8% glucose to 8% fructose in 2-day tests, the CAST mice preferred fructose to glucose. These preferences emerged with repeated testing which suggested post-oral influences. In a second experiment, 2-day choice tests were conducted with the sugars versus a sucralose + saccharin (SS) mixture which is highly preferred in brief access tests. B6 mice strongly preferred glucose but not fructose to the non-nutritive SS whereas CAST mice preferred SS to both glucose and fructose even when food restricted. This implied that CAST mice are insensitive to the postoral appetite stimulating actions of the 2 sugars. A third experiment revealed, however, that intragastric glucose and fructose infusions conditioned significant but mild flavor preferences in CAST mice, whereas in B6 mice glucose conditioned a robust preference but fructose was ineffective. Thus, unlike other mouse strains and rats, glucose is not more reinforcing than fructose in CAST mice. Their oral preference for fructose over glucose may be related to a subsensitive maltodextrin receptor or glucose-specific receptor which is stimulated by glucose but not fructose. The failure of CAST mice to prefer glucose to a non-nutritive sweetener distinguishes this strain from other mouse strains and rats.

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