Effects of carvacrol and physical exercise on motor and memory impairments associated with Parkinson’s disease

ABSTRACT The present study was undertaken to investigate the effects of carvacrol and treadmill exercise on memory deficit, rotational behavior and oxidative stress biomarkers in a 6-OHDA-lesioned rat model of Parkinson’s disease. Wistar rats were treated with carvacrol at a dose of 25 mg/kg and/or ran on a treadmill for a week. Then, 6-OHDA was microinjected into the medial forebrain bundle and treatments continued for six more weeks. Aversive memory, rotational behavior and oxidative stress biomarkers were assessed at the end of week six. The 6-OHDA-lesioned group showed a significant increase in rotational behavior and a decrease in step-through latency in the passive avoidance test compared with the sham group. These behaviors were accompanied by increased lipid peroxidation levels and decreased total thiol concentration in the striatum and/or hippocampus of the hemiparkinsonian rats. Moreover, treatment with carvacrol and exercise reduced rotational behavior and improved aversive memory deficit, which was accompanied by decreased lipid peroxidation levels and increased total thiol concentration in the striatum and/or hippocampus. In conclusion, treatment with carvacrol and treadmill exercise ameliorated motor and memory deficits by modulating oxidative stress in the striatum and hippocampus of hemiparkinsonian rats. Therefore, the combination of carvacrol and treadmill exercise could be an effective therapeutic tool for treatment of neurobehavioral deficits in Parkinson’s disease patients.