Metabolic Brain Disease

, Volume 34, Issue 1, pp 71–77 | Cite as

Can a hypercholesterolemic diet change the basal brain electrical activity and during status epilepticus in rats?

  • Romildo de Albuquerque NogueiraEmail author
  • Daniella Tavares Pessoa
  • Eva Luana Almeida da Silva
  • Edbhergue Ventura Lola Costa
Original Article


The brain is an organ rich in lipids, including cholesterol, in which these lipids are associated to structure and brain function. Thus alterations in lipid levels of diets may interfere in the brain electrical activity. Our aim was to evaluate the interference of hypercholesterolemic diets in the brain electrical activity in normal individuals and with epilepsy. Histological analysis and electrocorticograms (ECoG) were performed in animals fed with and without hypercholesterolemic diet before and during the status epilepticus induced by pilocarpine. The power spectrum of ECoG was used to estimate the contribution of different brain rhythms in ECoG signal. The animals submitted to the status epilepticus showed cell death, vacuolization with destructuration of the cell layers. Both animal groups, those with status epilepticus and status epilepticus with hypercholesterolemic diet, showed cellular lesions similar. The hyperlipid diet promoted increase of brain electrical activity, this was revealed by increase in the average power of beta wave (14–30 Hz) and decrease in the average power of the delta wave (0,5–4 Hz). This increase of brain electrical activity was even higher when the animals were fed a hypercholesterolemic diet and submitted to status epilepticus. Animals fed with hypercholesterolemic diet and submitted to status epilepticus presented a higher increase in brain excitability compared to control animals. We observed that hypercholesterolemic diet favored a greater severity of the status epilepticus.


Cholesterol Power spectrum Status epilepticus Brain electrical activity 



We are grateful to the Dr. Valdemiro Amaro da Silva Júnior of the Pathology Laboratory of the Veterinary Medicine Department of UFRPE and the Research Support Center of UFRPE (CENAPESQ) for providing technical support.

This study was funded by the following Brazilian support agencies: Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES), Foundation for Science and Technology Support in Pernambuco (FACEPE) and the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors state there are no conflicts of interest.

Statement on the welfare of animals

All procedures performed in this study involving animals were in accordance with the ethical standards of the UFRPE, approved by the Local Committee for the Care and Ethical Use of Animals in Research (CEUA/UFRPE, Recife, PE, Brazil).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Romildo de Albuquerque Nogueira
    • 1
    Email author
  • Daniella Tavares Pessoa
    • 1
  • Eva Luana Almeida da Silva
    • 1
  • Edbhergue Ventura Lola Costa
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Theoretical, Experimental and Computational Biophysics, Department of Animal Morphology and PhysiologyRural Federal University of Pernambuco (UFRPE)RecifeBrazil

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