Reduced saccharin preference in CXBK (opioid receptor-deficient) mice

Raz Yirmiya*, Israel Lieblich, John C. Liebeskind

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


The preference for sweet solutions in opioid receptor-deficient (CXBK) and control (C57BL/6By) mice was compared. CXBK and C57BL/6By (C57) mice were presented for 2 h/day with 2 tubes, one always containing water and the other containing either water or various concentrations of saccharin solution. Fifteen minutes before the drinking session, half of the mice in each strain were injected with naltrexone (0.2 mg/kg) and the other half with saline. Compared to C57 mice, CXBK mice had significantly lower saccharin preference. Naltrexone reduced the saccharin preference in both strains, almost completely abolishing preference in CXBK mice. The results support the hypothesis that brain opioid receptors are involved in mediating sweet palatability and suggest that genetic differences in opioid receptor density contribute to differences in the palatability of sweet solutions.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)339-342
Number of pages4
JournalBrain Research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 12 Jan 1988
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We note with sorrow the death of our colleague and friend. Professor Israel Lieblich. September 25. 1986. This research was supported by NIH Grants NS "~"o'z"e", ~' wJ. C.L.) and NS 11611'! (J. Garcia) and bv a gift from the David H. Murdock Foundation for Advanced Brain Studies.


  • Endogenous opioid peptide
  • Mouse
  • Naltrexone
  • Opiate receptor
  • Palatability
  • Sweet preference


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