Protective effects of Punica granatum seeds extract against aging and scopolamine induced cognitive impairments in mice
Dementia is one of the age related mental problems and characteristic symptom of various neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease. This impairment probably is due to the vulnerability of the brain cells to increased oxidative stress during aging process. Many studies have shown that certain phenolic antioxidants attenuate neuronal cell death induced by oxidative stress. The present work was undertaken to assess the effect of ethanolic extract of Punica granatum seeds on cognitive performance of aged and scopolamine treated young mice using one trial step-down type passive avoidance and elevated plus maze task. Aged or scopolamine treated mice showed poor retention of memory in step-down type passive avoidance and in elevated plus maze task. Chronic administration (21 days) of Punica granatum extract and vitamin C significantly (p < 0.05) reversed the age induced or scopolamine induced retention deficits in both the paradigms. Punica granatum extract also significantly lowered lipid peroxidation level and increased antioxidant glutathione level in brain tissues. Punica granatum preparations could be protective in the treatment of cognitive disorders such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Key words: Punica granatum, Cognitive deficits, Vitamin C, Scopolamine, Antioxidants