Brain Neurorehabil.  2011 Sep;4(2):95-102. 10.12786/bn.2011.4.2.95.

Effect of Regular Exercise Program on Cognitive Function in Chronic Cerebral Hypoperfused Rat

  • 1Department of Physical & Rehabilitation Medicine, Research Institute of Medical Sciences, Center for Aging and Geriatrics, Chonnam National University Medical School, Korea.


OBJECTIVE: To investigate the effect of regular exercise program on cognitive function in chronic cerebral hypoperfused rat. METHOD: Forty-eight male Sprague-Dawley rats were used. Chronic cerebral hypoperfusion was induced by bilateral common carotid arteries occlusion (BCCAO). All rats were randomly divided into 4 groups: normal rats (group A); normal rats with regular exercise program (group B); BCCAO rats (group C); BCCAO rats with regular exercise program (group D). Regular exercise program was composed of daily 30-minute treadmill exercise for 4 weeks. Cognitive function was evaluated by Morris water maze (MWM) test. The activities of superoxide dismutase (SOD) and the level of malondialdehyde (MDA) were checked. The neurons were microscopically analyzed on Hematoxylin-Eosin and Cresyl violet stains.
After regular exercise program, there was significant difference in the escape latency among 4 groups in hidden platform trial of MWM test (p<0.05). There was significant difference in the number of crossings among 4 groups in probe trial of MWM test (p<0.05). The activities of SOD of group A and group D were significantly higher than those of group C, respectively (p<0.05). Histopathological study displayed the formation of apoptotic cell bodies and pyknotic cells in group C and group D. There were more normal neurons in group D than group C.
Regular treadmill exercise was helpful in improving cognitive function in chronic cerebral hypoperfused rat. Therefore, regular exercise program would be one of the useful strategies for treating chronic neurodegenerative diseases.


cognition; dementia; exercise; function
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