Genetic differences in the behavioral organization of binge eating, conditioned food reward, and compulsive-like eating in C57BL/6J and DBA/2J strains

Richard K. Babbs, Julia C. Kelliher, Julia L. Scotellaro, Kimberly P. Luttik, Megan Mulligan, Camron D. Bryant

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Binge eating (BE) is a heritable symptom of eating disorders associated with anxiety, depression, malnutrition, and obesity. Genetic analysis of BE could facilitate therapeutic discovery. We used an intermittent, limited access BE paradigm involving sweetened palatable food (PF) to examine genetic differences in BE, conditioned food reward, and compulsive-like eating between C57BL/6J (B6J) and DBA/2J (D2J) inbred mouse strains. D2J mice showed a robust escalation in intake and conditioned place preference for the PF-paired side. D2J mice also showed a unique style of compulsive-like eating in the light/dark conflict test where they rapidly hoarded and consumed PF in the preferred unlit environment. BE and compulsive-like eating exhibited narrow-sense heritability estimates between 56 and 73%. To gain insight into the genetic basis, we phenotyped and genotyped a small cohort of 133 B6J × D2J-F2 mice at the peak location of three quantitative trait loci (QTL) previously identified in F2 mice for sweet taste (chromosome 4: 156 Mb), bitter taste (chromosome 6: 133 Mb) and behavioral sensitivity to drugs of abuse (chromosome 11: 50 Mb). The D2J allele on chromosome 6 was associated with greater PF intake on training days and greater compulsive-like PF intake, but only in males, suggesting that decreased bitter taste may increase BE in males. The D2J allele on chromosome 11 was associated with an increase in final PF intake and slope of escalation across days. Future studies employing larger crosses and genetic reference panels comprising B6J and D2J alleles will identify causal genes and neurobiological mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)51-66
Number of pages16
JournalPhysiology and Behavior
Volume197
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2018

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Bulimia
Reward
Eating
Food
Inbred DBA Mouse
Chromosomes, Human, Pair 11
Chromosomes, Human, Pair 6
Alleles
Genetic Crosses
Food Preferences
Chromosomes, Human, Pair 4
Inbred Strains Mice
Quantitative Trait Loci
Street Drugs
Malnutrition
Anxiety
Obesity
Depression
Light
Genes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

Cite this

Genetic differences in the behavioral organization of binge eating, conditioned food reward, and compulsive-like eating in C57BL/6J and DBA/2J strains. / Babbs, Richard K.; Kelliher, Julia C.; Scotellaro, Julia L.; Luttik, Kimberly P.; Mulligan, Megan; Bryant, Camron D.

In: Physiology and Behavior, Vol. 197, 01.12.2018, p. 51-66.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Babbs, Richard K. ; Kelliher, Julia C. ; Scotellaro, Julia L. ; Luttik, Kimberly P. ; Mulligan, Megan ; Bryant, Camron D. / Genetic differences in the behavioral organization of binge eating, conditioned food reward, and compulsive-like eating in C57BL/6J and DBA/2J strains. In: Physiology and Behavior. 2018 ; Vol. 197. pp. 51-66.
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