*Olorunfemi O.J., Okoseimiema S.C. and Ibeachu P.C.


Exposure to high voltage electricity (greater than 500 volts) has the potential to result in serious tissue damage including the human brain. Serious electrical shock injuries usually have an entrance and exit site on the body because the individual becomes part of the electrical circuit. The study was designed to investigate the brain Acetyl cholinesterase and spatial learning activities in rats exposed to electroshock. Twenty five wistar rats were arranged into five groups: Group 1(negative control) was given saline water and feed without electroshock, group 2 was exposed to 2mA shock using electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), group 3 was exposed to 3mA shock using ECT, group 4 was exposed to 5mA shock using ECT, group 5(positive control) was given 0.1ml/100g epinephrine. All procedures of treatment lasted throughout the period of study. They were all made to undergo some set of neurobehavioral tests that included a total of nine (9) trials spanning three weeks of spatial learning and memory tests which include: Navigational maze, Passive avoidance test, and Barnes maze test. The results obtained were analyzed using SPSS version 20.0 statistical package. Neurobehavioral observations showed that quality of adaptive locomotion improved significantly (p<0.05) the test groups exposed (especially at 5mA) to shock from week 1 to week 3 and thus up regulated cognition aspect of motor function when compared to the control groups while the degree of awareness declined significantly at week 3 with 5mA though observations from spatial learning poor quality from 5mA but was enhanced at lower shock exposure with significance. This study was also designed to investigate the effect of different shock levels on brain Acetyl cholinesterase. With electroshock of 2mA, 3mA, there was an increase in AchE which caused destruction in Ach, then there was a reverse at 5mA as there was a decrease in AchE significantly though this observation did not influence any visible decrement in behavioral response during the period of study. From result obtained, it can be seen that ECT can cause elevation response in Brain Acetyl cholinesterase level alongside improved spatial learning activities with a delayed onset of cognitive decline in Rats.

Keywords: Electroshock, wistar rat, Acetyl cholinesterase, Navigation maze, Barnes maze.

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