Prenatal choline supplementation alters the timing, emotion, and memory performance (TEMP) of adult male and female rats as indexed by differential reinforcement of low-rate schedule behavior.


Journal Article

Choline availability in the maternal diet has a lasting effect on brain and behavior of the offspring. To further delineate the impact of early nutritional status, we examined effects of prenatal-choline supplementation on timing, emotion, and memory performance of adult male and female rats. Rats that were given sufficient choline (CON: 1.1 g/kg) or supplemental choline (SUP: 5.0 g/kg) during embryonic days (ED) 12-17 were trained with a differential reinforcement of low-rate (DRL) schedule that was gradually transitioned through 5-, 10-, 18-, 36-, and 72-sec criterion times. We observed that SUP-females emitted more reinforced responses than CON-females, which were more efficient than both groups of males. In addition, SUP-males and SUP-females exhibited a reduction in burst responding (response latencies <2 sec) compared with both groups of CON rats. Furthermore, despite a reduced level of burst responding, the SUP-males made more nonreinforced responses prior to the DRL criterion as a result of maintaining the previous DRL criterion following transition to a new criterion. In summary, long-lasting effects of prenatal-choline supplementation were exhibited by reduced frustrative DRL responding in conjunction with the persistence of temporal memory in SUP-males and enhanced temporal exploration and response efficiency in SUP-females.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Cheng, R-K; MacDonald, CJ; Williams, CL; Meck, WH

Published Date

  • March 5, 2008

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 15 / 3

Start / End Page

  • 153 - 162

PubMed ID

  • 18323570

Pubmed Central ID

  • 18323570

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1549-5485

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1072-0502

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1101/lm.729408


  • eng