Center of Experimental Morphology

Departamento de Anatomia - Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade do Porto

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Protective effects of a catechin-rich extract on the hippocampal formation and spatial memory in aging rats


Research Area: Uncategorized Year: 2013
Type of Publication: Article
Authors:
Journal: Behav Brain Res
Number: 246 Pages: 94-102
BibTex:
Abstract:
Green tea (GT) displays strong anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties mostly attributed to (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), while experiments focusing on other catechins are scarce. With the present work we intended to analyze the neuroprotective effects of prolonged consumption of a GT extract (GTE) rich in catechins but poor in EGCG and other GT bioactive components that could also afford benefit. The endpoints evaluated were aging-induced biochemical and morphological changes in the rat hippocampal formation (HF) and behavioral alterations. Male Wistar rats aged 12 months were treated with GTE until 19 months of age. This group of animals was compared with control groups aged 19 (C-19M) or 12 months (C-12M). We found that aging increased oxidative markers but GTE consumption protected proteins and lipids against oxidation. The age-associated increase in lipofuscin content and lysosomal volume was also prevented by treatment with GTE. The dendritic arborizations of dentate granule cells of GTE-treated animals presented plastic changes accompanied by an improved spatial learning evaluated with the Morris water maze. Altogether our results demonstrate that the consumption of an extract rich in catechins other than EGCG protected the HF from aging-related declines contributing to improve the redox status and preventing the structural damage observed in old animals, with repercussions on behavioral performance.

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Faculdade de Medicina da Universidade do Porto
Al. Professor Hernâni Monteiro
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