Investigação

Início / Investigação / Capítulos de Livros / Variation in salivary protein composition related to feeding behavior and its ecological implications.

Variation in salivary protein composition related to feeding behavior and its ecological implications.

Ano
2010
In:
Chemical Ecology: Biochemistry, Evolutionary Origin and Practical Applications.
Abstract

As feeding strategies are typical traits reflecting the adaptation of species, studies on ingestive physiology of different trophic groups could increase knowledge on complex dynamic processes of grazing ecosystems. This article points out the potential of salivary protein profiles for non-invasively and dynamically accessing mammal feeding behavior.
The oral cavity is the part of an animal‘s internal medium that first comes into contact with food. Numerous chemical and mechanical mouth receptors respond to chemical and physical properties of food and monitor its changes during processing. This leads to the central perception of taste and texture of food, which together with odor are important determinants in the decision for ingestion. Saliva plays an important role in the perception of taste and texture sensations: its composition can modulate food perception and can be simultaneously modulated by the type of diet.
Differences in food acceptance are common among species of different trophic groups. They are thought to be related to the levels of potentially harmful compounds found in regular diets and to the behavioral and physiological adaptations of animals to these compounds. Concerning plant secondary metabolites (PSMs), such as tannins, salivary proteins are considered one of the animal‘s defense mechanisms. Among tannin-binding salivary proteins, proline-rich proteins are the best studied. Their presence in mammalian saliva varies according to species and dietary habits. However, various other salivary proteins may also be involved in diet selection.
An extensive and quantitative comprehension of salivary protein composition is only available for humans. In the present article we present the state of the art of animal salivary protein research categorized in trophic groups, which are important to define the ecological role of mammals. For example, sheep and goats are two ruminant species, which differ in PSMs intake and salivary proteomes. In accordance to that, mice, having a different digestive morphophysiology, show significant differences in salivary proteomes both in the normal profile and after tannin consumption. Although adaptation to tannins is species-specific a common feature was found: the increase in protein expression levels usually associated with stress situations. The pro and contra of using these data in ingestive behavior research is also critically assessed.

Keywords

Salivary proteins; Feeding behavior; Ecology

Tipo de Revisão
Internacional
Âmbito Geográfico
Internacional
Situação
Publicado
Referência

Baptista, E; Lamy, E; Mau, M; Capela, F; Coelho, A (2009). Variation in salivary protein composition related to feeding behavior and its ecological implications. In: Chemical Ecology: Biochemistry, Evolutionary Origin and Practical Applications. New York: Nova Science Publishers Inc.: 115-136.