Urocanic acid enhances memory consolidation and reconsolidation in novel object recognition task

Xu-Dong Yu, Yan-Xin Mo, James Reilly, Shao-Wen Tian*, Xinhua Shu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Urocanic acid (UCA) is an endogenous small molecule that is elevated in skin, blood and brain after sunlight exposure, mainly playing roles in the periphery systems. Few studies have investigated the role of UCA in the central nervous system. In particular, its role in memory consolidation and reconsolidation is still unclear. In the present study, we investigated the effect of intraperitoneal injection of UCA on memory consolidation and reconsolidation in a novel object recognition memory (ORM) task. In the consolidation version of the ORM task, the protocol involved three phases: habituation, sampling and test. UCA injection immediately after the sampling period enhanced ORM memory performance; UCA injection 6h after sampling did not affect ORM memory performance. In the reconsolidation version of the ORM task, the protocol involved three phases: sampling, reactivation and test. UCA injection immediately after reactivation enhanced ORM memory performance; UCA injection 6h after reactivation did not affect ORM memory performance; UCA injection 24h after sampling without reactivation did not affect ORM memory performance. This UCA-enhanced memory performance was not due to its effects on nonspecific responses such as locomotor activity and exploratory behavior. The results suggest that UCA injection enhances consolidation and reconsolidation of an ORM task, which further extends previous research on UCA effects on learning and memory.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-68
Number of pages7
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Volume579
Early online date23 Sep 2021
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Sep 2021

Keywords

  • urocanic acid; consolidation; reconsolidation; memory; object recognition

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