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Taste responsiveness to two steviol glycosides in three species of nonhuman primates
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Biology. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Biology. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Biology. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering. Kolmården Wildlife Park, Kolmården, Sweden.
Borås Zoo, Borås, Sweden.
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2018 (English)In: Current Zoology, ISSN 1674-5507, Vol. 64, no 1, p. 63-68Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Primates have been found to differ widely in their taste perception and studies suggest that a co-evolution between plant species bearing a certain taste substance and primate species feeding on these plants may contribute to such between-species differences. Considering that only platyrrhine primates, but not catarrhine or prosimian primates, share an evolutionary history with the neotropical plant Stevia rebaudiana, we assessed whether members of these three primate taxa differ in their ability to perceive and/or in their sensitivity to its two quantitatively predominant sweet-tasting substances. We found that not only neotropical black-handed spider monkeys, but also paleotropical black-and-white ruffed lemurs and Western chimpanzees are clearly able to perceive stevioside and rebaudioside A. Using a two-bottle preference test of short duration, we found that Ateles geoffroyi preferred concentrations as low as 0.05 mM stevioside and 0.01 mM rebaudioside A over tap water. Taste preference thresholds of Pan troglodytes were similar to those of the spider monkeys, with 0.05 mM for stevioside and 0.03 mM for rebaudioside A, whereas Varecia variegata was slightly less sensitive with a threshold value of 0.1 mM for both substances. Thus, all three primate species are, similar to human subjects, clearly more sensitive to both steviol glycosides compared to sucrose. Only the spider monkeys displayed concentration-response curves with both stevioside and rebaudioside A which can best be described as an inverted U-shaped function suggesting that Ateles geoffroyi, similar to human subjects, may perceive a bitter side taste at higher concentrations of these substances. Taken together, the results of the present study do not support the notion that a co-evolution between plant and primate species may account for between-species differences in taste perception of steviol glycosides.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Oxford University Press, 2018. Vol. 64, no 1, p. 63-68
Keywords [en]
taste preference thresholds, stevioside, rebaudioside A, Western chimpanzees, spider monkeys, black-and-white ruffed lemurs
National Category
Zoology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-145206DOI: 10.1093/cz/zox012ISI: 000425719000007PubMedID: 29492039OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-145206DiVA, id: diva2:1183340
Available from: 2018-02-16 Created: 2018-02-16 Last updated: 2018-03-20Bibliographically approved

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Amundin, MatsLaska, Matthias

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