The regulation of sodium metabolism is achieved by the adaptive sodium-saving capacities in epithelia and by hormones acting within the brain to modulate salt appetite. Taste, especially in rodents, has a sodium-specific component that provides a guiding function for salt intake. The taste responsiveness is not invariable, however, and may be modified in the case of sodium need. This review discusses emerging functional aspects of the peripheral and central branch of the salt sensory pathway.
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