Insulin immuno-neutralization decreases food intake in chickens without altering hypothalamic transcripts involved in food intake and metabolism

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In mammals, insulin regulates blood glucose levels and plays a key regulatory role in appetite via the hypothalamus. In contrast, chickens are characterized by atypical glucose homeostasis, with relatively high blood glucose levels, reduced glucose sensitivity of pancreatic beta cells, and large resistance to exogenous insulin. The aim of the present study was to investigate in chickens the effects of 5 h fasting and 5 h insulin immuno-neutralization on hypothalamic mRNA levels of 23 genes associated with food intake, energy balance, and glucose metabolism. We observed that insulin immune-neutralization by administration of anti-porcine insulin guinea pig serum (AI) significantly decreased food intake and increased plasma glucose levels in chickens, while 5 h fasting produced a limited and non-significant reduction in plasma glucose. In addition, 5 h fasting increased levels of NPY, TAS1R1, DIO2, LEPR, GLUT1, GLUT3, GLUT8, and GCK mRNA. In contrast, AI had no impact on the levels of any selected mRNA. Therefore, our results demonstrate that in chickens, food intake inhibition or satiety mechanisms induced by insulin immuno-neutralization do not rely on hypothalamic abundance of the 23 transcripts analyzed. The hypothalamic transcripts that were increased in the fasted group are likely components of a mechanism of adaptation to fasting in chickens.

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