Effects of vinburnine on experimental models
of learning and memory impairments

Drago F, Grassi M, Valerio C,
Spadaro F, D'Agata V, Lauria N. Institute of Pharmacology,
University of Catania Medical School, Italy.
Pharmacol Biochem Behav 1990 Sep;37(1):53-7


Retrograde amnesia can be induced experimentally in mice by injecting them with scopolamine (3 mg/kg, IP) or by inducing seizures with pentylenetetrazol (50 mg/kg, IP), and in rats by subjecting them to hypobaric hypoxia (at a barometric pressure of 300 mmHg for 3 min). We have studied the effects of vinburnine (VNB) in these amnesic states compared to vincamine (VNC) and nicergoline (NCG), in order to assess its activity on drug-induced learning and memory impairments. Vinburnine reduced the disrupting effect of both scopolamine and pentylenetetrazol-induced seizures on the retention of a step-through passive avoidance behavior in mice and on the acquisition of shuttle-box active avoidance behavior in rats. This effect was dose-related up to 20 mg/kg, the peak effect dose after IP administration, and more pronounced than that of VNC and NCG in some tests. These results indicate that VNB influences learning and memory processes disrupted by a pharmacological manipulation. In particular, as scopolamine acts as anticholinergic drug, it is possible that VNB mechanism of action includes also a stimulation of acetylcholine neurotransmission.

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