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Effects of long-term administration of a cocoa polyphenolic extract (Acticoa powder) on cognitive performances in aged rats

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The British journal of nutrition (Impact Factor: 3.34). 08/2008; 100(1):94-101. DOI: 10.1017/S0007114507886375
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Numerous studies have indicated that increased vulnerability to oxidative stress may be the main factor involved in functional declines during normal and pathological ageing, and that antioxidant agents, such as polyphenols, may improve or prevent these deficits. We examined whether 1-year administration of a cocoa polyphenolic extract (Acticoa powder), orally delivered at the dose of 24 mg/kg per d between 15 and 27 months of age, affects the onset of age-related cognitive deficits, urinary free dopamine levels and lifespan in old Wistar-Unilever rats. Acticoa powder improved cognitive performances in light extinction and water maze paradigms, increased lifespan and preserved high urinary free dopamine levels. These results suggest that Acticoa powder may be beneficial in retarding age-related brain impairments, including cognitive deficits in normal ageing and perhaps neurodegenerative diseases. Further studies are required to elucidate the mechanisms of cocoa polyphenols in neuroprotection and to explore their effects in man.

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    • "Consumption of cocoa flavanols has been reported to result in improvements in memory and learning (Bisson et al., 2008; Spencer, 2009; Scholey et al., 2010). Both long-and short-term memory processes were improved by the consumption of cocoa polyphenolic extract, as evaluated by month-to-month or trial-to-trial performances (Bisson et al., 2008). Available evidence indicates that (−)-epicatechin does cross the blood–brain barrier, as epicatechin glucuronide and 3 -O-methyl epicatechin glucuronide have been observed in rat brain for up to 10 days af- Figure 6 Cocoa polyphenol extracts (CPE) attenuated hydrogen peroxide (H 2 O 2 )-induced inhibition of gap-junction intercellular communication (GJIC), which is involved in tumorigenesis (Lee et al., 2010). "
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