Giving uridine and/or docosahexaenoic acid orally to rat dams during gestation and nursing increases synaptic elements in brains of weanling pups

Mehmet Cansev, George Marzloff, Toshimasa Sakamoto, Ismail H. Ulus, Richard J. Wurtman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations

Abstract

Developing neurons synthesize substantial quantities of membrane phospholipids in producing new synapses. We investigated the effects of maternal uridine (as uridine-5′-monophosphate) and docosahexaenoic acid supplementation on pups' brain phospholipids, synaptic proteins and dendritic spine densities. Dams consumed neither, 1 or both compounds for 10 days before parturition and 20 days while nursing. By day 21, brains of weanlings receiving both exhibited significant increases in membrane phosphatides, various pre- and postsynaptic proteins (synapsin-1, mGluR1, PSD-95), and in hippocampal dendritic spine densities. Administering these phosphatide precursors to lactating mothers or infants could be useful for treating developmental disorders characterized by deficient synapses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-192
Number of pages12
JournalDevelopmental Neuroscience
Volume31
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2009
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Dendritic spines
  • Development
  • Docosahexaenoic acid
  • Infant nutrition
  • Membrane phosphatides
  • Synaptic proteins
  • Synaptogenesis
  • Uridine

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