Dimebon enhances hippocampus-dependent learning in both appetitive and inhibitory memory tasks in mice

Julie Vignisse, Harry W. M. Steinbusch, Alexei Bolkunov, Joao P. Costa-Nunes, Ana Isabel Santos, Christian Grandfils, Sergei Bachurin, Tatyana Strekalova*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

38 Citations (Web of Science)


Pre-clinical and clinical studies on dimebon (dimebolin or latrepirdine) have demonstrated its use as a cognitive enhancer. Here, we show that dimebon administered to 3-month-old C57BL6N mice 15 min prior to training in both appetitive and inhibitory learning tasks via repeated (0.1 mg/kg) and acute (0.5 mg/kg) i.p. injections, respectively, increases memory scores. Acute treatment with dimebon was found to enhance inhibitory learning, as also shown in the step-down avoidance paradigm in 7-month-old mice. Bolus administration of dimebon did not affect the animals' locomotion, exploration or anxiety-like behaviour, with the exception of exploratory behaviour in older mice in the novel cage test. In a model of appetitive learning, a spatial version of the Y-maze, dimebon increased the rate of correct choices and decreased the latency of accessing a water reward after water deprivation, and increased the duration of drinking behaviour during training/testing procedures. Repeated treatment with dimebon did not alter the behaviours in other tests or water consumption. Acute treatment of water-deprived and non-water-deprived mice with dimebon also did not affect their water intake. Our data suggest that dimebon enhances hippocampus-dependent learning in both appetitive and inhibitory tasks in mice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)510-522
JournalProgress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology & Biological Psychiatry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 30 Mar 2011


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Dimebon
  • Hippocampus-dependent memory
  • Mouse

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