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A TNF-α inhibitor abolishes sepsis-induced cognitive impairment in mice by modulating acetylcholine and nitric oxide homeostasis, BDNF release, and neuroinflammation.

Neurodegenerative disorders have a pathophysiology that heavily involves neuroinflammation. In this study, we used lipopolysaccharide (LPS) to create a model of cognitive impairment by inducing systemic and neuroinflammation in experimental animals. LPS was injected intraperitoneally at a dose of 0.5mg/kg during the last seven days of the study. Adalimumab (ADA), a TNF-α inhibitor, was injected at a dose of 10mg/kg a total of 3 times throughout the study. On the last two days of the experiment, 50mg/kg of curcumin was administered orally as a positive control group. Open field (OF) and elevated plus maze tests (EPM) were used to measure anxiety-like behaviors. The tail suspension test (TST) was used to measure depression-like behaviors, while the novel object recognition test (NOR) was used to measure learning and memory activities. Blood and hippocampal TNF α and nitric oxide (NO) levels, hippocampal BDNF, CREB, and ACh levels, and AChE activity were measured by ELISA. LPS increased anxiety and depression-like behaviors while decreasing the activity of the learning-memory system. LPS exerted this effect by causing systemic and neuroinflammation, cholinergic dysfunction, and impaired BDNF release. ADA controlled LPS-induced behavioral changes and improved biochemical markers. ADA prevented cognitive impairment induced by LPS by inhibiting inflammation and regulating the release of BDNF and the cholinergic pathway.

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