, Volume 124, Issue 1, pp 70-82
Date: 12 Apr 2008

Effects of Pre- and Postnatal Exposure to Chromium Picolinate or Picolinic Acid on Neurological Development in CD-1 Mice

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Chromium picolinate, Cr(pic)3, a popular dietary supplement marketed as an aid in fat loss and lean muscle gain, has also been suggested as a therapy for women with gestational diabetes. The current study investigated the effects of maternal exposure to Cr(pic)3 and picolinic acid during gestation and lactation on neurological development of the offspring. Mated female CD-1 mice were fed diets from implantation through weaning that were either untreated or that contained Cr(pic)3 (200 mg kg−1 day−1) or picolinic acid (174 mg kg−1 day−1). A comprehensive battery of postnatal tests was administered, including a modified Fox battery, straight-channel swim, open-field activity, and odor-discrimination tests. Pups exposed to picolinic acid tended to weigh less than either control or Cr(pic)3-exposed pups, although the differences were not significant. Offspring of picolinic acid-treated dams also appeared to display impaired learning ability, diminished olfactory orientation ability, and decreased forelimb grip strength, although the differences among the treatment groups were not significant. The results indicate that there were no significant effects on the offspring with regard to neurological development from supplementation of the dams with either Cr(pic)3 or picolinic acid.