Rapid eye movements (REM) deprivation induces complex deteriorating
effects, which include brain morphological changes such as reduced
neurogenesis processes, brain neurochemical and hormonal modifications,
and cognitive decline. One of the major effects of REM deprivation is an
increased anxiety level. The aim of this study was to examine the
effects of pretreatment with a specific mixture of essential fatty acids
on the increased level of anxiety on the behavioral level (elevated plus
maze), on the hormonal level (corticosterone level) and on the
physiological level (thermoregulation).
The results showed that pretreatment with a mixture of essential fatty
acids protect the rats from the anxiolytic effects of REM deprivation.
The effects of essential fatty acids on sleep mechanisms, on the one
hand, and on anxiety levels, on the other hand, may explain the
beneficial effects of the pretreatment.
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