Influence of Early Salt Diet on Taste and Blood Pressure in Rats

  • Robert J. Contreras


This chapter represents, in part, a progress report on a research program investigating the influence of prenatal and early postnatal exposure to NaCl on the development of adult taste preferences and aversions and blood pressure regulation in Sprague-Dawley rats. The research program’s focus is on development and plasticity with the view that the structure and function of the neuroendocrine systems that control sodium and blood pressure regulation are immature during early stages of development and amenable to change due to dietary experience. The research program unites the effort of five independent investigators each of whom having unique expertise on sensory and regulatory behavior and neuroendocrine mechanisms. The investigators are Neil E. Rowland, Alan C. Spector, and Michael J. Katovich from the University of Florida, and James C. Smith and myself at the Florida State University. Robert M. Werner, a Research Veterinarian, directs an animal core facility at FSU for breeding and raising the experimental animals under strict dietary treatment conditions for the research of the five laboratories. The multiproject research program has been in existence for two years. However, the research has its historical roots in the literature dealing with the neuroendocrine mechanisms of motivation, particularly that dealing with hunger, thirst, and salt appetite.


Mean Arterial Pressure Salt Intake Chemical Sens Salt Group Geniculate Ganglion 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert J. Contreras
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyThe Florida State UniversityTallahassee

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