`Olive Polyphenols May Affect Learning and Memory - Olive Oil Times

Olive Polyphenols May Affect Learning and Memory

Apr. 10, 2013
Elena Paravantes

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New research con­ducted by the Institute of Cellular Biology and Neurobiology in Rome, showed that olive polyphe­nols may affect cer­tain pro­teins in the brain that are involved in mem­ory, learn­ing and think­ing.

For this study pub­lished in the jour­nal Nutrition, the researchers pro­vided mice with an olive extract that con­tained olive polyphe­nols. This olive extract was obtained from olive pomace, the remains of the olives after the oil has been extracted.

After 10 days they mea­sured lev­els of Nerve growth fac­tor (NGF) and brain-derived neu­rotropic fac­tor (BDNF), which are neu­rotrophins.


Neurotrophins are pro­teins that are involved in the proper func­tion­ing and devel­op­ment of neu­rons. According to the researchers NGF and BDNF play key roles in brain cell devel­op­ment, growth, and sur­vival.

The researchers found ele­vated lev­els of NGF and BDNF in the hip­pocam­pus and olfac­tory bulbs com­pared to the con­trol group. The researchers con­cluded that olive polyphe­nols in mice may increase the lev­els of NGF and BDNF in cru­cial areas, which play a key role in learn­ing and mem­ory processes.

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