Send to

Choose Destination
Behav Neurosci. 2002 Dec;116(6):1022-31.

Cognitive deficits in docosahexaenoic acid-deficient rats.

Author information

Laboratory of Membrane Biochemistry and Biophysics, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Rockville, Maryland 20852, USA.


This study investigated the influence of brain docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) deficiency on simple and complex olfactory-based learning and memory in 2nd generation (F2) adult male rats. Rats raised and maintained on either an n-3-adequate or an n-3-deficient diet were tested for acquisition of an olfactory learning set and an olfactory memory task, and for motivation to obtain a water reward. Despite a 76% decrease in brain DHA, n-3-deficient rats were able to acquire most simple 2-odor discrimination tasks but were deficient in the acquisition of a 20-problem olfactory learning set. This deficit could not be attributed to changes in sensory capacity but, instead, appeared to represent a deficit in higher order learning.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for American Psychological Association
Loading ...
Support Center