Atropine exposure in adolescence predispose to adult memory loss in Wistar rats
Some of the brain malfunctions in adulthoods have been linked to the developmental process in their childhood, especially in most adolescent who have been exposed to one form of drug abuse or another. This study investigated the effect of atropine exposure at adolescence on the memory and histology of the frontal cortex of Wistar rats and its effects on adult memory. 20 male adolescent Wistar rats were used for the study. The rats were divided into two groups of 10 rats each. The first group were administered with100 mg/kg body weight of atropine (Atr), and the other 10 rats were given 10 mL/kg body weight of normal saline (NS) for 7 days at adolescence. On 8th day, the rats were subjected to novel object recognition test (NOR) and ‘Y’ maze test to assess their memory function, 5 rats from each group were euthanized using ketamine and were perfused transcardially with 4% paraformaldehyde. Thereafter, the brains were removed and processed for histology using H&E and Giemsa stain. The remaining 5 rats from each group were reared till adult (65 days postpartum) without treatment denoted as Atr-I and NS-I respectively. The same memory tests and histology study were conducted on the rats at adulthood. Data were analysed using Student t test and P<0.05 was set as significant level. Atr and Atr-1showed decline in memory neither index from NOR compared with NS and NS-I respectively. Atr-I shows decline in Y maze compared to NS-I. The study concludes that atropine exposed rats show significant signs of neural cell death in the frontal cortex which progresses into adulthood as evidence from the histological findings.
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Keywords: Atropine, drug abuse, adolescence, adulthood, memory loss