Individual differences in spatial memory among aged rats are related to hippocampal PKCγ immunoreactivity

Paul J. Colombo, Michela Gallagher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We reported previously that the extent of spatial memory impairment among aged rats was correlated positively with levels of protein kinase Cγ in hippocampal homogenates measured by quantitative Western blotting (Colombo et al., 1997). In the current study, immunocytochemistry was used to test whether the relationship between elevated PKCγ and memory impairment among aged rats could be localized further within regions of the hippocampus. Six- and 24-month-old male Long-Evans rats were first trained in the water maze on a standard place-learning task and then trained 2 weeks later on a transfer task designed for rapid acquisition. In comparison with young rats, aged rats with impaired spatial memory had increased PKCγ-immunoreactivity (PKCγ-ir) in CA1 of the hippocampus, but not the dentate gyrus. In addition, PKCγ-ir in CA1 was correlated positively with spatial memory impairment among aged rats on the standard place-learning and the transfer training tasks. The current results are consistent with our previous report of PKCγ in hippocampal homogenates, and show further that the relationships between PKCγ-ir and memory impairments among aged rats are most evident in area CA1. Thus age-related impairments of spatial memory, as well as deficits in the flexible use of previously acquired information, may result from dysregulation of PKCγ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)285-289
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2002


  • CA1
  • Impaired spatial memory
  • Protein kinase Cγ

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cognitive Neuroscience


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