The authors report an effort to advance animal models that mimic the cognitive decline of Alzheimer's disease. Rats were trained and repeatedly tested in a spatial delayed matching-to-position paradigm in the water maze, with the location of the submerged platform changing between, but not within, days. After Trial 1 (random search) and intertrial intervals of 30 s or 1 hr, memory was tested in Trial 2. Young rats quickly acquired this task and were repeatedly tested after different intervals over 7 months, with a slight increase in performance toward the end of testing, but no difference in latencies between delays. Oral long-term treatment of 1 group with 0.1 % aluminum caused no delay-dependent working memory deficit. This testing protocol may enable between- and within-subject long-term assessment of spatial working memory before and after drug treatment and may prove useful in animal models of progressive cognitive decline.
- INDUCED NEUROFIBRILLARY DEGENERATION
- EPISODIC-LIKE MEMORY
- SYNAPTIC PLASTICITY
- SYSTEMIC ALUMINUM