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Neuropeptides. 2005 Jun;39(3):239-43.

Galanin impairs performance on learning and memory tasks: findings from galanin transgenic and GAL-R1 knockout mice.

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Laboratory of Behavioral Neuroscience, National Institute of Mental Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA.


Galanin (GAL) impairs performance on cognitive tasks when administered centrally to rats. GAL transgenic (GAL-tg) mice overexpressing endogenous GAL show deficits on the probe trial of the Morris water maze spatial learning task, on the social transmission of food preference olfactory memory task, and on the trace cued fear conditioning emotional learning and memory task. Knockout mice deficient in the GAL-R1 receptor subtype were normal on most memory tasks, while showing a small deficit in trace cued fear conditioning, suggesting a selective role for the GAL-R1 in aversive memories, and implicating other GAL receptor subtypes in spatial learning and olfactory social memory. The growing body of rodent literature implicating excess GAL in cognitive impairment is relevant to the overexpression of GAL in the basal forebrain during the progression of Alzheimer's disease.

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