Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 693–707 | Cite as

Cinnamon Converts Poor Learning Mice to Good Learners: Implications for Memory Improvement

  • Khushbu K. Modi
  • Suresh B. Rangasamy
  • Sridevi Dasarathi
  • Avik Roy
  • Kalipada Pahan
ORIGINAL ARTICLE

Abstract

This study underlines the importance of cinnamon, a commonly used natural spice and flavoring material, and its metabolite sodium benzoate (NaB) in converting poor learning mice to good learning ones. NaB, but not sodium formate, was found to upregulate plasticity-related molecules, stimulate NMDA- and AMPA-sensitive calcium influx and increase of spine density in cultured hippocampal neurons. NaB induced the activation of CREB in hippocampal neurons via protein kinase A (PKA), which was responsible for the upregulation of plasticity-related molecules. Finally, spatial memory consolidation-induced activation of CREB and expression of different plasticity-related molecules were less in the hippocampus of poor learning mice as compared to good learning ones. However, oral treatment of cinnamon and NaB increased spatial memory consolidation-induced activation of CREB and expression of plasticity-related molecules in the hippocampus of poor-learning mice and converted poor learners into good learners. These results describe a novel property of cinnamon in switching poor learners to good learners via stimulating hippocampal plasticity.

Keywords

Cinnamon Sodium benzoate Poor learners CREB Memory and learning 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This study was supported by grants from National Institutes of Health (AT6681) and Alzheimer’s Association (IIRG-12-241179) and Veterans Affairs Merit Award (1I01BX003033).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Khushbu K. Modi
    • 1
  • Suresh B. Rangasamy
    • 1
  • Sridevi Dasarathi
    • 1
  • Avik Roy
    • 1
  • Kalipada Pahan
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Neurological SciencesRush University Medical CenterChicagoUSA
  2. 2.Division of Research and DevelopmentJesse Brown Veterans Affairs Medical CenterChicagoUSA

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