A common genetic influence on human intensity ratings of sugars and high-potency sweeteners

Hwang, Liang-Dar, Zhu, Gu, Breslin, Paul A. S., Reed, Danielle R., Martin, Nicholas G. and Wright, Margaret J. (2015) A common genetic influence on human intensity ratings of sugars and high-potency sweeteners. Twin Research and Human Genetics, 18 4: 361-367. doi:10.1017/thg.2015.42

Author Hwang, Liang-Dar
Zhu, Gu
Breslin, Paul A. S.
Reed, Danielle R.
Martin, Nicholas G.
Wright, Margaret J.
Title A common genetic influence on human intensity ratings of sugars and high-potency sweeteners
Journal name Twin Research and Human Genetics   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1839-2628
Publication date 2015-08
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1017/thg.2015.42
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 18
Issue 4
Start page 361
End page 367
Total pages 7
Place of publication Cambridge, United Kingdom
Publisher Cambridge University Press
Collection year 2016
Language eng
Formatted abstract
The perception of sweetness varies among individuals but the sources of this variation are not fully understood. Here, in a sample of 1,901 adolescent and young adults (53.8% female; 243 MZ and 452 DZ twin pairs, 511 unpaired individuals; mean age 16.2 ± 2.8, range 12–26 years), we studied the variation in the perception of sweetness intensity of two monosaccharides and two high-potency sweeteners: glucose, fructose, neohesperidine dihydrochalcone (NHDC), and aspartame. Perceived intensity for all sweeteners decreased with age (2–5% per year) and increased with the history of otitis media (6–9%). Males rated aspartame slightly stronger than females (7%). We found similar heritabilities for sugars (glucose: h2 = 0.31, fructose: h2 = 0.34) and high-potency sweeteners (NHDC: h2 = 0.31, aspartame: h2 = 0.30); all were in the modest range. Multivariate modeling showed that a common genetic factor accounted for >75% of the genetic variance in the four sweeteners, suggesting that individual differences in perceived sweet intensity, which are partly due to genetic factors, may be attributed to a single set of genes. This study provided evidence of the shared genetic pathways between the perception of sugars and high-potency sweeteners.
Keyword Heritability
High-potency sweeteners
Sweet intensity
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2016 Collection
School of Medicine Publications
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