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Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2011 Oct;99(4):659-64. doi: 10.1016/j.pbb.2011.06.010. Epub 2011 Jun 15.

Chronic coffee and caffeine ingestion effects on the cognitive function and antioxidant system of rat brains.

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  • 1Laboratório de Nutrição Experimental (LNE), Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Av. Antônio Carlos, 6627, Pampulha, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, 31270-901, Brazil.

Abstract

Coffee is a popular beverage consumed worldwide and its effect on health protection has been well studied throughout literature. This study investigates the effect of chronic coffee and caffeine ingestion on cognitive behavior and the antioxidant system of rat brains. The paradigms of open field and object recognition were used to assess locomotor and exploratory activities, as well as learning and memory. The antioxidant system was evaluated by determining the activities of glutathione reductase (GR), glutathione peroxidase (GPx) and superoxide dismutase (SOD), as well as the lipid peroxidation and reduced glutathione content. Five groups of male rats were fed for approximately 80 days with different diets: control diet (CD), fed a control diet; 3% coffee diet (3%Co) and 6% coffee diet (6%Co), both fed a diet containing brewed coffee; 0.04% caffeine diet (0.04%Ca) and 0.08% caffeine diet (0.08%Ca), both fed a control diet supplemented with caffeine. The estimated caffeine intake was approximately 20 and 40 mg/kg per day, for the 3%Co-0.04%Ca and 6%Co-0.08%Ca treatments, respectively. At 90 days of life, the animals were subjected to the behavioral tasks and then sacrificed. The results indicated that the intake of coffee, similar to caffeine, improved long-term memory when tested with object recognition; however, this was not accompanied by an increase in locomotor and exploratory activities. In addition, chronic coffee and caffeine ingestion reduced the lipid peroxidation of brain membranes and increased the concentration of reduced-glutathione. The activities of the GR and SOD were similarly increased, but no change in GPx activity could be observed. Thus, besides improving cognitive function, our data show that chronic coffee consumption modulates the endogenous antioxidant system in the brain. Therefore, chronic coffee ingestion, through the protection of the antioxidant system, may play an important role in preventing age-associated decline in the cognitive function.

Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

PMID:
21693129
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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