Methyl 4,6-dichloro-4,6-dideoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside: an inhibitor of sweet taste responses in gerbils

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Science  28 Jan 1983:
Vol. 219, Issue 4583, pp. 408-410
DOI: 10.1126/science.6849141


The sugar methyl 4,6-dichloro-4,6-dideoxy-alpha-D-galactopyranoside (DiCl-gal) is a new type of inhibitor of the gerbil's electrophysiological taste response to sucrose or saccharin. Saturated solutions of this compound alone barely stimulate the gerbil's taste nerve. But, when mixed with sucrose or saccharin, DiCl-gal suppresses the gerbil's taste response to these two sweeteners. In contrast, when mixed with sodium chloride or hydrochloric acid, DiCl-gal does not affect the taste responses to these compounds. However, unlike other inhibitors of sweet taste, the DiCl-gal taste suppression is short-lived and occurs only when the inhibitor is combined with the sweetener.