Effects of pulsed electromagnetic fields on learning and memory abilities of STZ-induced dementia rats

Yue Li, Yingchao Zhang, Weihong Wang, Yuxia Zhang, Yang Yu, Gladys Lai Ying Cheing, Weidong Pan

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Recent studies have shown that pulsed electromagnetic field (EMF) has therapeutic potential for dementia, but the associated neurobiological effects are unclear. This study aimed to determine the effects of pulsed EMF on Streptozotocin (STZ)-induced dementia rats.Methods: Forty Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly allocated to one of the four groups: (i) control, (ii) normal saline injection (sham group), (iii) STZ injection (STZ group) and (iv) STZ injection with pulsed EMF exposure (PEMF, 10 mT at 20 Hz) (STZ + MF group). Morris water maze was used to assess the learning and memory abilities. Insulin growth factors 1 and 2 (IGF-1 and IGF-2) gene expression were determined by quantitative PCR. Results: The results showed that the mean escape latency in STZ-induced dementia rats was reduced by 66% under the exposure of pulsed EMF. Compared with the STZ group, the swimming distance and the time for first crossing the platform decreased by 55 and 41.6% in STZ + MF group, respectively. Furthermore, the IGF-2 gene expression significantly increased compared to that of the STZ group. Conclusions: Our findings indicate that the pulsed EMF exposure can improve the ability of learning and memory in STZ-induced dementia rats and this effect may be related to the process of IGF signal transduction, suggesting a potential role for the pulsed EMF for the amelioration of cognition impairment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-130
Number of pages8
JournalElectromagnetic Biology and Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 3 Apr 2019


  • dementia
  • insulin growth factor
  • Morris water maze
  • Pulsed electromagnetic field

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biophysics
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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