Taste cells are more complex than simple sensors for sweetness. The T1r2+T1r3 receptor in taste cells detects the sweetness of glucose and sucrose as well as artificial sweeteners, such as saccharin and aspartame.
In earlier work, researchers led by Timothy Gilbertson, Utah State University, USA, found that mice lacking the T1r3 subunit can still detect sweetness. The group has now shown that hormone and sugar receptors in the pancreas and intestine are also present in taste cells. This improved understanding of sweetness and its effects on consumption could lead researchers to new approaches to understand why some people over-eat sweet foods.
- Glucose transporters and ATP-gated K + (K ATP ) metabolic sensors are present in type 1 taste receptor 3 (T1r3)-expressing taste cells
K. K. Yee, S. K. Sukumaran, R. Kotha, T. A. Gilbertson , R. F. Margolskee,
Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 2011.