Epicatechin, a component of dark chocolate, enhances memory formation if applied during the memory consolidation period

Commun Integr Biol. 2016 Jul 27;9(4):e1205772. doi: 10.1080/19420889.2016.1205772. eCollection 2016 Jul-Aug.


Epicatechin (Epi), a flavanol found in foods such as dark chocolate has previously been shown to enhance memory formation in our model system, operant conditioning of aerial respiration in Lymnaea. In those experiments snails were trained in Epi. Here we ask whether snails exposed to Epi before training, during the consolidation period immediately following training, or 1 h after training would enhance memory formation. We report here that Epi is only able to enhance memory if snails are placed in Epi-containing pond water immediately after training. That is, Epi enhances memory formation if it is applied during the memory consolidation period as well as if snails are trained in Epi-containing pond water.

Keywords: Epicatechin; Lymnaea; consolidation period; long-term memory.