Journal of
Neuroscience and Behavioral Health

  • Abbreviation: J. Neurosci. Behav. Health
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2286
  • DOI: 10.5897/JNBH
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 65

Full Length Research Paper

Changes in behaviour, and cerebellar histology of Wistar rats exposed to refuse dump

Ijomone Meashack
  • Ijomone Meashack
  • Department of Human Anatomy, Cross River University of Technology, Okuku, Cross River State, Nigeria, 3Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
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Gilbert Waritimi
  • Gilbert Waritimi
  • Department of Human Anatomy, Niger Delta University, Amassoma, Wilberforce Island, Bayelsa State, Nigeria.
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Felix Onyije
  • Felix Onyije
  • Department of Human Anatomy, Niger Delta University, Amassoma, Wilberforce Island, Bayelsa State, Nigeria.
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Atoni Atoni
  • Atoni Atoni
  • Department of Human Anatomy, Niger Delta University, Amassoma, Wilberforce Island, Bayelsa State, Nigeria.
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Polycarp Nwoha*
  • Polycarp Nwoha*
  • Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
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  •  Received: 22 October 2014
  •  Accepted: 01 December 2014
  •  Published: 30 January 2015

Abstract

Open waste dump sites are a common spectacle in Nigeria. These sites may cause neurotoxicity to people dwelling in their vicinity. Hence, the present study investigated the effects of long-term habitation at the vicinity of refuse dump sites on motor, mood and cognitive behaviours in rats, as well as on cerebellar histology. Young adult male Wistar rats, approximately 70 days old, were used for this study. Rats were housed in the vicinity of a refuse dump site for 8 months. At the end of 8 months rats were subjected to neurobehavioural studies in the open-field test (OFT), elevated-plus maze (EPM) and Morris water maze (MWM). Following behavioural studies, the cerebellum was excised and prepared for routine Hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) staining protocol. Results showed significant difference (p<0.05) on motor parameters of the OFT between exposed rats and control. Also, exposed rats showed significantly lower (P<0.05) % time in open arms on the EPM, and significantly higher (p<0.001) latency in the MWM. Histological studies revealed alterations to the cerebellar white core as well as degenerative changes of the Purkinje cells. This study therefore shows that long-term habitation in the vicinity of refuse dump site may be injurious to brain structures accompanied with behavioural defects.

Key words: Refuse dump, behaviour, motor, cerebellum, rats.