The present preclinical study was created to determine the therapeutic effects of vitamin D hormone treatment as an adjunctive therapy alone or in a combination with low dose of 17β-estradiol (17β-E2
) on anxiety-like behavior in female rats with long-term absence of estrogen. Accordingly, the aim of the current study was to examine the effects of chronic cholecalciferol administration (1.0, 2.5 or 5.0 mg/kg subcutaneously, SC, once daily, for 14 days) on the anxiety-like state after long-term ovariectomy in female rats. Twelve weeks postovariectomy, cholecalciferol was administered to ovariectomized (OVX) rats and OVX rats treated with 17β-E2
(0.5 µg/rat SC, once daily, for 14 days). Anxiety-like behavior was assessed in the elevated plus maze (EPM) and the light/dark test (LDT), and locomotor and grooming activities were tested in the open field test (OFT). Cholecalciferol at two doses of 1.0 and 2.5 mg/kg alone or in combination with 17β-E2
produced anxiolytic-like effects in OVX rats as evidenced in the EPM and the LDT, as well as increased grooming activity in the OFT. Our results indicate that cholecalciferol, at two doses of 1.0 and 2.5 mg/kg, has a profound anxiolytic-like effects in the experimental rat model of long-term estrogen deficiency.
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