Perinatal hypothyroidism effects on neuromotor competence, novelty-directed exploratory and anxiety-related behaviour and learning in rats

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

35 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Thyroid hormone is essential for proper development of the mammalian CNS. Previous studies have documented a decrease in the ability of neonatal hypothyroid animals to learn and to habituate to maze tests and an increase in spontaneous activity. However, there is little information about the effects of perinatal (i.e. perinatal and postnatal) hypothyroidism on behaviour. The aim of the present work was to investigate the longitudinal effects of perinatal hypothyroidism on certain aspects of the behaviour in rats. Neuromotor competence was tested at 21, 40 and 60 days, novelty-directed exploratory behaviour and anxiety-related behaviour were evaluated at 40 and 60 days by means of the Boissier tests and associative learning ability was tested at 80 days by means of a step-through passive avoidance task. The persistence of the effects of perinatal hypothyroidism on psychomotor performance was highly dependent on the task examined. Perinatal hypothyroidism caused an increase of locomotor activity as revealed by the total distance travelled in the Boissier test and this increase also comprised a component of decreased anxiety-related behaviour. Methimazole-treated subjects also had higher head-dip scores than controls at 40 days while no differences were observed at 60 days. Finally, our results showed that methimazole-treated rats performed poorly in a passive avoidance learning task. © 2003 Elsevier Science B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-215
JournalBehavioural Brain Research
Volume143
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Aug 2003

Keywords

  • Activity
  • Methimazole
  • Perinatal hypothyroidism
  • Step-through passive avoidance task

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Perinatal hypothyroidism effects on neuromotor competence, novelty-directed exploratory and anxiety-related behaviour and learning in rats'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this