Chronic Oral Pelargonidin Alleviates Learning and Memory Disturbances in Streptozotocin-Diabetic Rats

Document Type : Research article


1 Department of Physiology, School of Basic Sciences, Shahed University, Tehran, Iran.

2 Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, Shahed University and Medicinal Plant Research Center, Tehran, Iran.

3 Department of Physiology, School of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran.


Diabetes mellitus is accompanied with disturbances in learning, memory, and cognitive skills in the humans and experimental animals. Due to the anti-diabetic and antioxidant activity of pelargonidin (PG), this research study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of chronic oral PG on alleviating learning and memory disturbance in streptozotocin-diabetic rats. Male Wistar rats were divided into control, diabetic, PG-treated control and PG (single- and/or multiple-dose)-treated diabetic groups. PG was administered p.o. once at a dose of 10 mg/kg and/or multiple doses on alternate days for 8 weeks. For induction of diabetes, streptozotocin (STZ) was injected IP in a single dose of 60 mg/kg. For the evaluation of learning and memory, initial latency (IL) and step-through latency (STL) were determined at the end of study using a passive avoidance test. Meanwhile, spatial memory was assessed in a Y-maze task. It was found that the alternation score of the diabetic rats was lower than the control (p < 0.05) and that single dose PG-treated diabetic rats (p < 0.05) showed a higher alternation score in comparison with the diabetic group. Regarding initial latency, there was no significant difference among the groups. In addition, diabetic and single-dose PG-treated diabetic rats developed a significant impairment in retention and recall in the passive avoidance test (p < 0.01), as was evident by a lower STL. Furthermore, the retention and recall of multiple-dose PG-treated diabetic rats was significantly higher in comparison with diabetic rats (p < 0.05). Therefore, it can be concluded that single-dose oral PG may attenuate spatial memory in the Y maze paradigm and multiple-dose chronic PG could improve retention and recall capability in the passive avoidance test in STZ-diabetic rats.