EGG phosphatidylcholine combined with vitamin B12 improved memory impairment following lesioning of nucleus basalis in rats

Life Sci. 1998;62(9):813-22. doi: 10.1016/s0024-3205(97)01183-1.


We investigated the effects of egg phosphatidylcholine (PC) combined with vitamin B12 on memory in the Morris water maze task, and on choline and acetylcholine (ACh) concentrations in the brain of rats. Animals with nucleus basalis Magnocellularis (NBM) lesion received intragastric administration of egg PC or vitamin B12, or both for 18 days. Memory acquisition and retention were remarkably impaired in NBM lesioned rats compared with in sham-operated control. NBM lesioned group had lower choline and ACh concentrations than control group in the frontal cortex. High dose of egg PC alone significantly increased choline concentration, but did not change ACh concentration in the frontal cortex. High dose of vitamin B12 alone did not change choline and ACh concentrations in the brain. Either egg PC or vitamin B12 did not improve memory acquisition and retention. However, low dose of egg PC combined with vitamin B12 significantly increased ACh concentration and improved memory acquisition and retention in the NBM lesioned rats. We concluded that egg PC combined with vitamin B12 improved the memory impairment of NBM lesioned rats through the action on the cholinergic neurons.

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholine / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Behavior, Animal / drug effects
  • Choline / metabolism
  • Eggs
  • Male
  • Memory Disorders / drug therapy*
  • Phosphatidylcholines / administration & dosage
  • Phosphatidylcholines / pharmacology
  • Phosphatidylcholines / therapeutic use*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Substantia Innominata / metabolism
  • Substantia Innominata / pathology*
  • Vitamin B 12 / administration & dosage
  • Vitamin B 12 / pharmacology
  • Vitamin B 12 / therapeutic use*


  • Phosphatidylcholines
  • Choline
  • Acetylcholine
  • Vitamin B 12