, Volume 111, Issue 3, pp 376-382

Influence of histamine depletion on learning and memory recollection in rats

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To clarify the role of endogenous histamine in learning and memory, the effect of α-fluoromethylhistidine on active avoidance response in rats was studied. α-Fluoromethylhistidine (20–100 mg/kg or 10–50 µg) significantly (P<0.05 orP<0.01) prolonged the response latency in active avoidance response when administered by either intraperitoneal or intracerebroventricular injection. These effects were dose-related and long lasting. A prolongation of the response latency induced by an intraperitoneal injection of α-fluoromethylhistidine (100 mg/kg) was antagonized by intracerebroventricular injection of histamine (10 and 20 ng) in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, the acquisition of this response was retarded by a consecutive intracerebroventricular injection of α-fluoromethylhistidine (50 µg), whereas histamine (100 ng) facilitated the response acquisition when administered by the same route. Both intraperitoneal (100 mg/kg) and intracerebroventricular injection of α-fluoromethylhistidine (50 µg) significantly (P<0.05 orP<0.01) decreased the brain histamine content, especially in the hippocampus and hypothalamus. When α-fluoromethylhistidine (50 µg) was injected intracerebroventricularly, there is a high correlation between a prolongation of the response latency and a decrease in histamine content of these brain areas. Based on these findings, it was concluded that an intimate relation may exist between a prolongation of response latency in the active avoidance response and a decrease in the brain histamine content; endogenous histamine may play an important role in learning and memory recollection in rats.