Paper in Life Sciences
  • Fardell JE, Vardy J, Johnston IN. (2013). The short and long term effects of docetaxel chemotherapy on rodent object recognition and spatial reference memory. Life Sciences, 93 (17) pp. 596-604.
    ABSTRACT

    AIMS:
    Previous animal studies have examined the potential for cytostatic drugs to induce learning and memory deficits in laboratory animals but, to date, there is no pre-clinical evidence that taxanes have the potential to cause cognitive impairment. Therefore our aim was to explore the short- and long-term cognitive effects of different dosing schedules of the taxane docetaxel (DTX) on laboratory rodents.

    MAIN METHODS:
    Healthy male hooded Wistar rats were treated with DTX (6mg/kg, 10mg/kg) or physiological saline (control), once a week for 3weeks (Experiment 1) or once only (10mg/kg; Experiment 2). Cognitive function was assessed using the novel object recognition (NOR) task and spatial water maze (WM) task 1 to 3weeks after treatment and again 4months after treatment.

    KEY FINDINGS:
    Shortly after DTX treatment, rats perform poorly on NOR regardless of treatment regimen. Treatment with a single injection of 10mg/kg DTX does not appear to induce sustained deficits in object recognition or peripheral neuropathy.

    SIGNIFICANCE:
    Overall these findings show that treatment with the taxane DTX in the absence of cancer and other anti-cancer treatments causes cognitive impairment in healthy rodents.