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Environ Toxicol Pharmacol. 2010 Sep;30(2):195-201. doi: 10.1016/j.etap.2010.06.003. Epub 2010 Jul 22.

Effects of prenatal and postnatal exposure to a low dose of bisphenol A on behavior and memory in rats.

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Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande (FURG), Rio Grande, RS, Brazil; Programa de Pós-graduação em Ciências Fisiológicas, Fisiologia Animal Comparada (FURG), Brazil.


Endocrine disruptors (EDs) are increasingly common chemicals in the environment. Bisphenol A (BPA), used to manufacture polycarbonate plastics, is an ED recognized for its estrogenic, anti-estrogenic, and anti-androgenic effects. Behavior is considered a vital characteristic for an animal's life cycle. This study evaluated the effect of exposure to low doses of BPA during pregnancy and/or lactation on several aspects of rat behavior, including memory, locomotion, and the exploratory instinct. Pups at 16 weeks of age (females and males) were divided into groups according to the mother's exposure to BPA (40μg/kg/day): CON (vehicle only); PRE (during pregnancy); LAC (during lactation); PRE-LAC (during both pregnancy and lactation). In the PRE-LAC group, exposure to BPA impaired both short-term (STM) and long-term memory (LTM) in inhibitory avoidance and the object recognition task, and also affected locomotor activity and spatial memory. Some sex-specific behavioral characteristics disappeared in the LAC group. Sex-specific memory and behavior impairment were caused by BPA exposure during brain organogenesis and differentiation.

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