Concurrent deficiencies of iron (Fe) (ID) and (n-3) fatty acids [(n-3)FAD)] in rats can alter brain monoamine pathways and impair learning and memory. We examined whether repletion with Fe and DHA/EPA, alone and in combination, corrects the deficits in brain monoamine activity (by measuring monoamines and related gene expression) and spatial working and reference memory [byMorris watermaze (MWM) testing] associated with deficiency. Using a 23 2 design, male rats with concurrent ID and (n-3) FAD [ID+(n-3)FAD] were fed an Fe+DHA/EPA, Fe+(n-3)FAD, ID+DHA/EPA, or ID+(n-3)FAD diet for 5 wk [postnatal d 56-91]. Biochemical measures and MWM performance after repletion were compared to age-matched control rats. The provision of Fe in combination with DHA/EPA synergistically increased Fe concentrations in the olfactory bulb (OB) (Fe x DHA/EPA interaction). Similarly, provision of DHA/EPA in combination with Fe resulted in higher brain DHA concentrations than provision of DHA alone in the frontal cortex (FC) and OB (P < 0.05). Dopamine (DA) receptor D1 was upregulated in the hippocampus of Fe+DHA/EPA rats (fold-change = 1.25; P < 0.05) and therewere significant Fe x DHA/EPA interactions on serotonin (5-HT) in the OBand on the DAmetabolite dihydroxyphenylacetic acid in the FC and striatum. Workingmemory performance was impaired in ID+DHA/EPA rats comparedwith controls (P < 0.05). In the referencememory task, Fe+DHA/EPA improved learning behavior, but Fe or DHA/EPA alone did not. These findings suggest that feeding either Fe or DHA/EPA alone to adult rats with both ID and (n-3)FAD affects the DA and 5-HT pathways differently than combined repletion and exacerbates the cognitive deficits associated with combined deficiency.
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Nutrition and Dietetics