Fitness Assays Reveal Incomplete Functional Redundancy of the HoxA1 and HoxB1 Paralogs of Mice.
BACKGROUND Intake of added sugar has been shown to correlate with many human metabolic diseases, and rodent models have characterized numerous aspects of the resulting disease phenotypes. However, there is a controversy about whether differential health effects occur because of the consumption of either of the two common types of added sugar-high-fructose corn syrup (fructose and glucose monosaccharides; F/G) or table sugar (sucrose, a fructose and glucose disaccharide). OBJECTIVES We tested the equivalence of sucrose- vs. F/G-containing diets on mouse (Mus musculus) longevity, reproductive success, and social dominance. METHODS We fed wild-derived mice, outbred mice descended from wild-caught ancestors, a diet in which 25% of the calories came from either an equal ratio of F/G or an isocaloric amount of sucrose (both diets had 63% of total calories as carbohydrates). Exposure lasted 40 wk, starting at weaning (21 d of age), and then mice (104 females and 56 males) were released into organismal performances assays-seminatural enclosures where mice competed for territories, resources, and mates for 32 wk. Within enclosures all mice consumed the F/G diet. RESULTS Females initially fed the F/G diet experienced a mortality rate 1.9 times the rate (P = 0.012) and produced 26.4% fewer offspring than females initially fed sucrose (P = 0.001). This reproductive deficiency was present before mortality differences, suggesting the F/G diet was causing physiologic performance deficits prior to mortality. No differential patterns in survival, reproduction, or social dominance were observed in males, indicating a sex-specific outcome of exposure. CONCLUSION This study provides experimental evidence that the consumption of human-relevant levels of F/G is more deleterious than an isocaloric amount of sucrose for key organism-level health measures in female mice.