Back ground: Amnesia is defined as an abnormal mental state in which memory and learning are affected out of all proportion to other cognitive functions. Memory loss may result from two-sided damage to parts of the brain vital for memory storage, processing or recall. Benzodiazepines are known to produce anterograde amnesia by involvement of GABAergic system and by interference of long term potentiation (LTP).In this study, we aimed to evaluate the effect of Morus alba fruit ethanolic extract (MAFEE) on diazepam induced amnesia in rats.
Materials and methods: MAFEE was administered for 14 successive days to rats (50 mg/kg). By using piracetam as the standard (dose 200 mg/kg), the ability of Morus alba fruit extract on diazepam induced amnesia in wistar rats was studied. The animals were randomly divided into 4 groups of Control, Diazepam treated (2mg/kg), MAFEE (50mg/kg) treated and Piracetam (200mg/kg) treated respectively. Y maze and open field habituation were employed parameters. The test methods like Y-Maze (to evaluate learning and memory), open field exploration studies are used to evaluate the anti –amnesic effect.
Result: Diazepam administration in rats at 2mg /kg for 14 days has induced anterograde amnesia.The parameters like % alterations (Y –Maze),line crossings, rearings and nose pokings ( open field test ) are used to assess the anti-amnesic effect of MAFEE in rats .Phytochemical investigation of ethanolic extract of Morus alba showed presence of both total phenolics (+++) and flavonoids (+++) . After the administration of MAFEE the behavioral analysis in rats was performed using Y -Maze and Open Field tests .MAFEE administration in rats has shown a significant increase (p<0.001) in spontaneous alterations on y-maze and line crossings and rearings on open field apparatus (p<0.05 ; p<0.01) when compared to diazepam treated group.How ever MAFEE administration has not shown any significant effect on nose pokings when compared to diazepam (p>0.05).
Conclusion: From our study results we validated the medicinal use of Morusalba for its anti-amnesic effect but still further research at molecular level has to be initiated to evaluate its role in cognitive dysfunction.