Acute Feeding StudiesMeasurement of Food Intake


One of the simplest screens for measuring the antiobesity potential of a novel drug is to evaluate its effects on food intake following acute administration. Acute feeding studies are often used as the initial screen for centrally-acting drugs.


Acute Feeding Studies in Mice


Key features of acute feeding studies are:-

     •     Rats or mice (singly-housed)
     •     Usually male lean animals
     •     Drugs administered by various routes eg po, sc, ip
     •     Mice acclimatised to palatable wet mash (4 h/day). Drugs given 60 min before mash. 
           Food intake normally measured over 1, 2 and 4 h.
     •     Rats maintained under reverse-phase lighting with free access to normal, powdered
           rat chow. Drugs given at onset of dark period. Food intake normally measured for 
           up to 24 h.
     •     Determination of ED50 values for inhibition of food intake (ie the dose of drug
           required to reduce food intake to 50% of control levels)
     •     Compounds can be given repeatedly for up to 7 days if a delayed onset of action is
     •     Blood sampling for pharmacokinetic analysis if required (at the end of studies or 
           from satellite groups of animals housed under identical conditions).

Acute Feeding Studies in Rats

All acute feeding studies are customised to meet the specific requirements of each client and include advice on experimental design, statistical analysis by a qualified statistician, fully audited data pack and written reports to regulatory standards if required.

Please contact us for further information about acute feeding studies in rats and mice. 


Vickers et al. 2005. Comparison of the effects of rimonabant, sibutramine and orlistat on acute food intake and in a model of dietary induced obesity in the mouse. Program No. 532.12. Society for Neuroscience Meeting, Washington, DC, 12th-16th November 2005.



Cheetham and Jackson 2012. Rodent models to evaluate anti-obesity drugs. In: TRP Channel Targets for Drugs and Toxins, Volume II. A Szallasi and T Bíró (Eds), Methods in Pharmacology and Toxicology, Volume I, Springer Protocols, Humana Press, pp351-376.


Vickers et al. 2011. The utility of animal models to evaluate novel anti-obesity agents. Br J Pharmacol 164: 1248-1262. [PubMed]