AEROBIC EXERCISE IMPROVES WORKING MEMORY IN AN ANIMAL MODEL OF PARKINSON’S DISEASE
Regular physical activity is known to have extensive health benefits. Physical activity increases overall survival and reduces the risk of various chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disorders, cancer, hypertension, morbid obesity, depression, diabetes, and osteoporosis. Various molecular mechanisms may be responsible for the observed positive effect associated with physical activity. The most important one refers to the capability of physical exercise to influence the brain’s chemistry and plasticity. Material and methods: we created 2 experimental groups of 6 rats each. First group received a physical exercise intervention, consisting of running on a treadmill adapted for small rodents, for a period of 2 weeks with training sessions composed of 3 sets of 5 minutes per day. The second group was used as control group. All the 12 rats received the pharmaceutical treatment with the substance was N-methyl-4-phenyl-1, 2, 3, 6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) for the Parkinson disease model (20 mg / kg). Results: One-Way ANOVA showed that there was a statistically significant difference (p<0.001) between the rats which were randomly assigned to the control group and the rats assigned in the second group, which received the aerobic exercise intervention in regard to the spontaneous alternations’ percent F (1, 10) = 41.096. These results show that aerobic exercise significantly increased spontaneous alternation percent by enhancing neurogenesis in our animal model of Parkinson’s disease. Physical exercise improved memory acquisition, memory retention and reversal learning in the Y-maze task. Conclusions: aerobic exercise increases neurogenesis, which influences both learning and memory. The interactions between the aerobic physical exercise, neurogenesis, learning, and memory are very complex and remarkably dynamic.
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