Some effects of manganese dichloride an essential trace metal that is required for bone formation, brain development and metabolism of carbohydrate on the body weight, brain and cerebellar weights were investigated in adult Wistar rats. Twenty eight adult Wistar rats of both sexes weighing between 150 to 200 g were separated into four groups including controls, each containing seven rats. Treated rats in Groups A, B and C received MnCl2orally at a doses of 5, 15 and 25 mg/kg body weight respectively for 21 consecutive days. The rats in Group D (control) received volumes of distilled water equal to those in the treated groups. The rats were sacrificed by cervical dislocation on the 26th day of the treatment. The cerebellum of each rat was removed and-weighed before fixing in 10% formol saline for routine histological procedures. The body weights of the Wistar rats decreased significantly (p < 0.05) in the treated Groups B and C compared with the controls. The body weight of the treated Group A rats showed a nominal decrease that was not- statistically significant. The cerebellar Purkinje cell population decreased significantly (p < 0.05) for all treatment groups. Similarly, the total brain and cerebellar weight decreased significantly (p < 0.05) in Groups B and C compared with the controls; and Group A also demonstrated a statistically decrease in the total brain weights but not in the cerebellar weights. The observed decrease in cerebellar Purkinje cell population, the total brain and cerebellar weights suggest that brain functions may be adversely affected.
Key words: Manganese, brain, cerebellum, Purkinje cells, weight, decrease.
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