Journal of medicinal food

Deer bone extract prevents against scopolamine-induced memory impairment in mice.

PMID 25546299


Deer bone has been used as a health-enhancing food as well as an antiaging agent in traditional Oriental medicine. Recently, the water extract of deer bone (DBE) showed a neuroprotective action against glutamate or Aβ1-42-induced cell death of mouse hippocampal cells by exerting antioxidant activity through the suppression of MAP kinases. The present study is to examine whether DBE improves memory impairment induced by scopolamine. DBE (50, 100 or 200 mg/kg) was administered orally to mice for 14 days, and then scopolamine (2 mg/kg, i.p.) was administered together with DBE for another 7 days. Memory performance was evaluated in the Morris water maze (MWM) test and passive avoidance test. Also, brain acetylcholinesterase (AChE) and choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) activity, biomarkers of oxidative stress and the loss of neuronal cells in the hippocampus, was evaluated by histological examinations. Administration of DBE significantly restored memory impairments induced by scopolamine in the MWM test (escape latency and number of crossing platform area), and in the passive avoidance test. Treatment with DBE inhibited the AChE activity and increased the ChAT activity in the brain of memory-impaired mice induced by scopolamine. Additionally, the administration of DBE significantly prevented the increase of lipid peroxidation and the decrease of glutathione level in the brain of mice treated with scopolamine. Also, the DBE treatment restored the activities of antioxidant enzymes such as superoxide dismutase, glutathione peroxidase, and glutathione reductase to control the level. Furthermore, scopolamine-induced oxidative damage of neurons in hippocampal CA1 and CA3 regions were prevented by DBE treatment. It is suggested that DBE may be useful for memory improvement through the regulation of cholinergic marker enzyme activities and the suppression of oxidative damage of neurons in the brain of mice treated with scopolamine.