Effects of reducing body mass on body core temperature and locomotor activity of mice originally kept on conventional rodent diet (Group-1) were compared to those made obese by feeding them a high-fat diet (Group-2), both groups being kept at a cool ambient temperature. Based on earlier experience, threshold torpor core temperature of 31° was chosen as the endpoint to decreasing body mass. It was hypothesized that the onset of this hypothermia develops in obese mice only when their body mass approaches a similar low body mass as in lean mice. Mice in Group-1 maintained nocturnal core temperature but developed marked daytime hypothermia of 30–31°C with their body mass approaching 20 g by this time. Mice in Group-2 could maintain normal circadian temperature rhythm for 3 weeks before similar daytime hypothermia started to develop while their body mass dropped also to about 20 g. Mice belonging to Group-1 or Group-2 could regain original body mass after re-feeding with the original diet within 2 days or 5 weeks, respectively. In the course of the development of daily torpor, nighttime normothermia was accompanied by progressive increases in locomotor activity in both groups of mice. It is concluded that in mice a marked fall of daytime body core temperature is only induced when a similar low critical body mass is reached, irrespective of the initial body mass. In other words, in both groups of mice the nutritional state determines the threshold for the thermoregulatory change during torpor.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Physiology (medical)