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Biological Trace Element Research

, Volume 189, Issue 1, pp 180–185 | Cite as

Zinc-Enriched Yeast Improves Learning and Memory Impairments in Zinc-Deficient Rats

  • Shuang-Qing ZhangEmail author
  • Hai-Bo Zhang
  • Qian Cheng
  • Ya-Min Zhu
  • Chang-Hong Xia
  • Yin-Hong Zhu
  • Yan ZhangEmail author
Article

Abstract

Zinc (Zn) highly concentrates in the brain and plays a key role in memory formation and learning processes. Zn deficiency results in cognitive impairments, memory deficits, alterations of neuropsychological behavior, and motor development. Although Zn-enriched yeast (ZnY) is widely used for dietary fortification and supplementation of Zn, the effect of ZnY on cognition still remains unclear. The purpose of the study was to investigate the effect of ZnY on behavior in Zn-deficient and Zn-sufficient rats. Three-week-old rats were fed low Zn diets for 145 days to establish Zn-deficient rats. ZnY was orally administered to Zn-deficient rats at three dose levels of 1, 2, and 4 mg Zn/kg/day for 55 days. Rat appearance, body weight, plasma and brain Zn, Morris water maze test, and step-through passive avoidance test were observed. Compared to Zn-sufficient rats, body weight gain, plasma zinc level, resident time, and step-through time in Zn-deficient rats were significantly lower. Zn deficiency impaired functions of learning and memory, while ZnY as a plausible therapeutic intervention alleviated the cognitive impairments caused by Zn deficiency.

Keywords

Zinc-enriched yeast Learning Memory Zinc deficiency 

Notes

Funding Information

The work was financially supported by the Hubei Provincial Natural Science Foundation of China (grant numbers 2017CFB572, 2018CFB612).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Statement of informed consent

All procedures were performed according to the Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals (NIH publication no. 85–23, eighth edition in 2011) and were approved by our Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Institute for Nutrition and HealthChinese Center for Disease Control and PreventionBeijingChina
  2. 2.The Hubei Provincial Key Laboratory of Yeast FunctionYichangChina

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