Impact of dietary sucrose on adiposity and glucose homeostasis in C57BL/6J mice depends on mode of ingestion: liquid or solid

Jacques Togo, Sumei Hu, Min Li, Chaoqun Niu, John R. Speakman* (Corresponding Author)

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Objective: Although it is widely accepted that obesity results from an imbalance of energy intake and expenditure, the mechanisms underlying this process and effective strategies for prevention and treatment are unclear. Growing evidence suggests excess consumption of sugar may play an important role, yet we showed previously in mice that consuming up to 30% of calories as sucrose in the diet had no impact on weight regulation. Since in humans consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages has been widely implicated, we investigated whether the mode of ingestion (solid or liquid) had different impacts on body weight regulation and glucose homeostasis. Methods: Dietary sucrose was delivered in solid (as part of a standard pelleted rodent chow) and liquid (in drinking water) to C57BL/6 mice for 8 weeks. Body weight, body composition, energy intake and expenditure were monitored, as well as glucose and insulin tolerance tests. Expression of sweet taste receptors on the tongue, and glycogen and fat contents of the liver were also measured. Results: Consumption of sucrose-sweetened water, but not equivalent levels of solid sucrose, led to body fat gain in C57BL/6 mice. Glucose intolerance was positively correlated to body fatness, rather than sucrose intake. Conclusions: Our data support the suggestion that consumption of liquid sucrose may be an important contributor to dysregulation of body weight and related metabolic syndromes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)22-32
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular Metabolism
Early online date4 Jun 2019
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2019

Bibliographical note

The study was funded by the Chinese Academy of Sciences Strategic Program (XDB13030100), the 1000 Talents program, and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (91649108) and a Wolfson merit award from the Royal Society all to J.R.S.; J.T was supported by the CAS-TWAS president's fellowship.


  • Dietary sucrose
  • Glucose tolerance
  • Insulin sensitivity
  • Obesity
  • Sweet taste receptors


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