Impairment of acetylcholine synthesis in thiamine deficient rats developed by prolonged tea consumption

Life Sci. 1984 Jan 23;34(4):365-70. doi: 10.1016/0024-3205(84)90625-8.


The synthesis of whole brain acetylcholine is reduced in thiamine deficient rats produced by prolonged administration of tea. In those rats fed a normal diet and given tea (1:50, w/v) instead of drinking water for 20 weeks, the conversion of [14C] pyruvate to [14C]acetylcholine decreased by 35%. However, no neurological symptoms were observed. Administration of tea to rats fed a thiamine half-deficient diet for 7-8 weeks caused not only 60% decrease in acetylcholine synthesis but also neurological symptoms. This decreased synthesis of acetylcholine is related to a decline in pyruvate dehydrogenase activity. The results suggest that prolonged administration of tea to rats cause an impairment of acetyl CoA production resulting in a deficit in acetylcholine synthesizing capacity.

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholine / biosynthesis*
  • Animals
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Male
  • Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Complex / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Tea
  • Thiamine Deficiency / etiology
  • Thiamine Deficiency / metabolism*


  • Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Complex
  • Tea
  • Acetylcholine