Catecholaminergic mechanisms of feeding-related lateral hypothalamic activity in the monkey

Hitoo Nishino, Yutaka Oomura, Shuji Aou, László Lénárd

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

21 Citations (Scopus)


The functional role of the catecholaminergic mechanism in the lateral hypothalamus (LHA), in feeding behavior of the monkey was investigated by single neuron activity recording and electrophoretic application of dopamine (DA), noradrenaline (NA) and their antagonists. The feeding paradigm had 4 phases: (1) cue light (CL) signaled start of bar press; (2) bar press (BP, 20-30 times); (3) short cue tone (CT) triggered by last bar press signaled presentation of food; and (4) ingestion-reward (RW). Of 312 neurons tested, 189 (61%) responded in one or more phases of the feeding task. Two types of response were observed: CL- or CT-related transient, and BP- or RW-related long-lasting responses. These feeding-related responses depended on the nature of the food and on the hunger-satiety level. DA excited or inhibited different neurons, while NA mainly inhibited firing. DA-sensitive neurons responded more often in the feeding task than insensitive neurons due mainly to differences in responsiveness to CL on (X2 test, P< 0.01), at motor initiation, and during BP (P < 0.05). Spiperone blocked the former two responses. NA-sensitive neurons responded more often in the feeding task due to responsiveness during BP and RW (P < 0.01). Sotalol blocked some BP-related responses, and phenoxybenzamine and sotalol blocked the CT-related responses. The data suggest that dopaminergic and noradrenergic inputs in the LHA are crucial in task initiation and reward processing, respectively. Integration oof these catecholaminergic and other inputs in the LHA might be important in accomplishing motivated feeding.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)56-67
Number of pages12
JournalBrain research
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 3 1987


  • Cue responses Reward
  • Dopamine
  • Electrophoresis
  • Lateral hypothalamus
  • Monkey
  • Noradrenaline
  • Operant feeding
  • Single neuron activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Catecholaminergic mechanisms of feeding-related lateral hypothalamic activity in the monkey'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this