Laura K. Alarcón

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Calcium and magnesium are essential for survival but it is unknown how animals detect and consume enough of these minerals to meet their needs. To investigate this, we exploited the PWK/PhJ (PWK) strain of mice, which, in contrast to the C57BL/6J (B6) and other inbred strains, displays strong preferences for calcium solutions. We found that the PWK strain(More)
Two-bottle choice tests were used to assess the taste preferences of 8 male and 8 female rats from 3 outbred strains (SD, LE, WI) and 11 inbred strains (BN, BUF, COP, DA, Dahl-S, F344, FHH, LEW, Noble, PVG, SHR). Each rat received a series of 109 48-h tests with a choice between water and a "taste solution". Four to eight concentrations of the following(More)
The goal of this study was to determine the adiposity of a range of rat strains, including a panel of consomics, to estimate heritability. To that end, we assessed the body fat distribution and organ weights of groups of adult male rats from 3 outbred strains, 11 inbred strains and 22 consomic strains. We measured the weights of the gonadal,(More)
Many animals can detect the taste of calcium but it is unclear how or whether humans have this ability. We show here that calcium activates hTAS1R3-transfected HEK293 cells and that this response is attenuated by lactisole, an inhibitor of hT1R3. Moreover, trained volunteers report that lactisole reduces the calcium intensity of calcium lactate. Thus,(More)
Vigorous motion can cause rodents to develop flavor aversions and show other signs of malaise. We tested whether a flavor aversion could be induced by shipping mice from an animal breeder to a test site. Boxes of 12 male C57BL/6J mice were shipped approximately 950 km from Bar Harbor, ME to Philadelphia, PA by truck. For some boxes, the gel provided for(More)
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