Influence of dietary fats on plasma cholesterol and body weight in Indian desert gerbils (Meriones hurrianae Jerdon)
Two groups of Indian deseit gerbils (Mertones hurrianae; Jordon) were fed diets containing different fats of plant origin for a period of 10 weeks. The control gerbils had 5 % peanut oil (PNO) whereas the experimental groups were fed with 5% Rice bran 011 (R30). After feeding for 10 weeks, the growth of the female gerbils fed RBO was significantly lower (p < 0.01) than that of RNO fed female gerbils. The growth difference between the male and female gerbils with respect to PNO was not however significant. There was no significant difference between the male and female groups with respect to liver weight. The RRO fed gerbils seemed to have low cholesterol level in the serum with significantly different levels between the males and females (1) < 0.01). T hus, the present studies suggest that Indian desert gerbils are sensitive to a cholesterol lowering effect ofvegetable oils and that these animals could be used as an experimental animal model instead of rats for evaluating the effect ofvarious dietary fats.