Behavior and neurotoxic consequences of lead on rat brain followed by recovery

  • B. Nehru
  • P. Sidhu


Long-term exposure to lead has been shown to produce behavioral disturbances in human and animal models. These disturbances are shown to be associated with alterations in cholinergic and dopaminergic neurotransmission in the central nervous system. The present experiment was designed to study the effect of lead exposure on neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine, and activity of acetyl cholinesterase along with alterations seen in memory and locomotor functions. Lead was administrated orally in a dose of 50 mg/kg for 8 wks on alternate days and a study was done at the end of exposure and also after 8 wk of recovery. Lead exposure reduced the brain and body weight, which, however, did not improve even after recovery of 8 wk. The alterations seen in the various transmitters also remain unchanged at the end of recovery. Lead exposure for 8 wk affected the locomotor and cognitive functions as assessed by the rota rod treadmill and active avoidance test. However, following a recovery period, a significant improvement was seen in locomotor as well as cognitive behavior. The short-term memory as assessed by the passive avoidance test remains unchanged both following lead exposure as well as recovery.

Index Entries

Behavioral studies lead toxicity neurotransmitters 


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Copyright information

© Humana Press Inc. 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • B. Nehru
    • 1
  • P. Sidhu
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BiophysicsPanjab UniversityChandigarhIndia

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