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Neurobiol Learn Mem. 2014 Dec;116:59-68. doi: 10.1016/j.nlm.2014.08.009. Epub 2014 Aug 30.

Dissociable effects of dorsal and ventral hippocampal DHA content on spatial learning and anxiety-like behavior.

Author information

1
Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Program, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States. Electronic address: ejgw3@mail.missouri.edu.
2
Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Program, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States.
3
Division of Animal Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States.
4
Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Program, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Thompson Center for Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Department of Radiology, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Department of Neurology, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States.
5
Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Program, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States; Department of Psychological Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, United States. Electronic address: gearyd@missouri.edu.

Abstract

Chronic deficiency of dietary docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) during critical developmental windows results in severe deficits in spatial learning, anxiety and hippocampal neuroplasticity that parallel a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders. However, little is known regarding the influence of long-term, multigenerational exposure to dietary DHA enrichment on these same traits. To characterize the potential benefits of multigenerational DHA enrichment, mice were fed a purified 10:1 omega-6/omega-3 diet supplemented with either 0.1% preformed DHA/kg feed weight or 1.0% preformed DHA/kg feed weight through three generations. General locomotor activity, spatial learning, and anxiety-like behavior were assessed in adult male offspring of the third generation. Following behavioral assessments, ventral and dorsal hippocampus was collected for DHA and arachidonic acid (AA) analysis. Animals consuming the 0.1% and 1.0% DHA diet did not differ from control animals for locomotor activity or on performance during acquisition learning, but made fewer errors and showed more stable across-day performance during reversal learning on the spatial task and showed less anxiety-like behavior. Consumption of the DHA-enriched diets increased DHA content in the ventral and dorsal hippocampus in a region-specific manner. DHA content in the dorsal hippocampus predicted performance on the reversal training task. DHA content in the ventral hippocampus was correlated with anxiety-like behavior, but AA content in the dorsal hippocampus was a stronger predictor of this behavior. These results suggest that long-term, multigenerational DHA administration improves performance on some aspects of complex spatial learning, decreases anxiety-like behavior, and that modulation of DHA content in sub-regions of the hippocampus predicts which behaviors are likely to be affected.

KEYWORDS:

Anxiety-like behavior; Arachidonic acid; Docosahexaenoic acid; Hippocampus; Spatial learning

PMID:
25180934
DOI:
10.1016/j.nlm.2014.08.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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