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J Exerc Rehabil. 2017 Jun 30;13(3):266-272. doi: 10.12965/jer.1734998.499. eCollection 2017 Jun.

Paternal physical exercise improves spatial learning ability by enhancing hippocampal neuroplasticity in male pups born from obese maternal rats.

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1
Department of Physiology, College of Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

Maternal obesity exerts negative effects on cognitive function and behavior of the offspring. In the present study, we assessed the effects of paternal physical exercise on spatial learning ability in relation with hippocampal neuroplasticity in the rat pups born from the obese maternal rats. There were four experimental groups: paternal nonexercised male pups from normal maternal rats, paternal exercised male pups from normal maternal rats, paternal nonexercised male pups from obese maternal rats, and paternal exercised male pups from obese maternal rats. Normal diet was supplied for normal maternal rats and high-fat diet was supplied for obese maternal rats for a 12-week period until mating, and the same diet for each group continued throughout pregnancy and lactation period. Male rats in the exercising groups exercised for a 12-week period. Spatial learning ability was reduced in the male rat pups born from the obese maternal rats. Expressions of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and tyrosine kinase B receptor (TrkB) in the hippocampus were suppressed and cell proliferation and differentiation in the hippocampus were reduced in the male rat pups born from the obese maternal rats. Paternal treadmill exercise improved spatial learning ability, increased BDNF and TrkB expressions, and enhanced cell proliferation and differentiation in the male rat pups born from the obese maternal rats. It can be suggested that paternal exercise enhances hippocampal neuroplasticity and consequently improved spatial learning ability in the rat pups born from the obese maternal rats.

KEYWORDS:

Hippocampus; Maternal obesity; Offspring; Paternal exercise; Spatial learning ability

Conflict of interest statement

CONFLICT OF INTEREST No potential conflict of interest relevant to this article was reported.

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