Investigation of dose-related effects of carnosine on anxiety with sympathetic skin response and T-maze

Dolu N., Acer H., KARA A.

Acta medica (Hradec Králové) / Universitas Carolina, Facultas Medica Hradec Králové, vol.57, no.3, pp.112-118, 2014 (Scopus) identifier identifier


Carnosine is a dipeptide formed of the amino acids β-alanine and histidine. Only a limited number of studies have examined the effects of carnosine on sympathetic nerve activation and anxiety. The present study was undertaken to determine the dose-related effects of carnosine on anxiety in the elevated T-maze test (ETM) with electrodermal activity (EDA). Carnosine was injected in three groups of rats with doses of 10 (low dose), 100 (medium dose) and 1000 (high dose) mg/kg i.p. Physiological saline was injected in the sham group. The anxiety scores of the rats were measured with ETM 20 minutes after injection. Then, SCL was measured. The decreased number of entries into the open arm (NEOA), the percentage of time spent in the open arm (% TSOA) and higher EDA [shown by skin conductance level (SCL)] indicate higher anxiety. The NEOA and % TSOA were lower in the high-dose group than in the other groups. SCL was lower in the medium-dose carnosine group than in the high-dose carnosine and sham groups. SCL was higher in the high-dose group than in the medium-dose and sham groups. Our results suggest that high-dose carnosine produced anxiety-like effects as assessed in the SCL and ETM. Medium-dose carnosine acted as an anxiolytic. The anxiety-related responses of carnosine depend on its dose-related effect.