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Episodic memory retrieval is fundamental for daily activities of humans and animals. Muscarinic cholinergic signaling is important for memory functioning and shows gender-dependent response in episodic memory retrieval. Dopamine D2 receptors influence memory formation and retrieval by influencing cholinergic signaling in the brain. This study aimed to determine the gender-dependent effects of D2 and muscarinic activity on memory retrieval. Male and female mice were trained for Morris water maze test and contextual fear conditioning. Memory retrieval was assessed following sub-chronic treatment (for 5 days) with D2 antagonist (risperidone 2.5 mg/kg) alone or in combination with scopolamine (1 mg/kg) or donepezil (1 mg/kg). Open field test was performed prior to the retrieval test to evaluate effects of risperidone treatment on locomotor activity and exploratory behavior. Risperidone co-treatment with donepezil impaired spatial memory retrieval in males only. Muscarinic and D2 simultaneous antagonism tend to impair fear retrieval in males but significantly enhanced retrieval of fear memories in female mice. These results suggest that D2 signaling influence muscarinic receptor activity during memory retrieval in gender-dependent manner.


Habiba Rashid, Touqeer Ahmed. Gender dimorphic effect of dopamine D2 and muscarinic cholinergic receptors on memory retrieval. Psychopharmacology. 2021 Apr 23

PMID: 33891128

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