Wafaa Arabi, Khaled Kahloula, Djallal Eddine Houari Adli, Houari Hemida, Mostapha Brahmi, Narimene Taibi, Amel Sidi Ikhlef and Miloud Slimani
Article publication date: 2022-06-02
Vol. 39 No. 3 (yearly), pp. 236-247.


Depression, Locomotor activity, Brain histology, Mercury Chloride, Green anis.


Purpose: Mercury is one of the metallic trace elements. This metal is harmful to health. However, Green anis is a plant widely used in the medical field for its various therapeutic virtues. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of subchonic exposure to mercury chloride (HgCl2) on the neurobehavioral status of young wistar rats as well as the neurocorrective effect of essential oil of green anis.

Methods: Extraction of essential oil by hydrodisillation. Exposure of developing rats to a dose of (100mg/L). Then, a group of the intoxicated animals underwent therapy with one dose (0.25 ml/kg) for 21 days intraperitoneally. In addition, the realization of a behavior test battery namely; the forced swimming test to assess the state of despair of the pups, the open field to assess the locomotor activity as well as the exploratory capacities followed by a histopathological study of the brain. Data were analyzed by two-way analysis of variance (ANOVA).

Results: The results of this study demonstrate that exposure to mercury induced significant decreases in body weight (p < 0.001) and brain weight (p < 0.05), respectively, increases the level of depression (p < 0.001), locomotor hypoactivity (p < 0.01) compared to control rats. Histological study revealed Purkinje cell degeneration, vascular congestion and lesions. Administration of Pimpinella anisum oil reduced levels of depression (p < 0.01), corrected locomotor hypoactivity (p < 0.05), and reduced mercury damage.

Conclusion: According to this study, exposure to mercury disrupted the neurobehavioral state of young rats by affecting certain brain structures. These disturbances can be regulated by the essential oil of anis.