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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2018, Article ID 3479083, 11 pages
Research Article

Beneficial Effects of Gagam-Palmultang on Scopolamine-Induced Memory Deficits in Mice

1Korean Medical Science Research Center for Healthy-Aging, Pusan National University, Yangsan 50612, Republic of Korea
2Department of Korean Medicine, School of Korean Medicine, Pusan National University, Yangsan 50612, Republic of Korea
3Department of Korean Medical Science, School of Korean Medicine, Pusan National University, Yangsan 50612, Republic of Korea
4Graduate Training Program of Korean Medicine for Healthy-Aging, School of Korean Medicine, Pusan National University, Yangsan 50612, Republic of Korea

Correspondence should be addressed to Byung Tae Choi;

Received 6 November 2017; Revised 28 December 2017; Accepted 14 January 2018; Published 18 February 2018

Academic Editor: Krishnadas Nandakumar

Copyright © 2018 Yu Ri Kim et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


From text mining of Dongeuibogam, the 7 herbs in Palmultang can be considered effective candidates for memory enhancement. We sought to determine whether Gagam-Palmultang, comprising these 7 herbs, ameliorates scopolamine-induced memory impairment in mice, by focusing on the central cholinergic system and memory-related signaling molecules. Behavioral tests were performed after inducing memory impairment by scopolamine administration. The cholinergic system activity and memory-related molecules were examined in the hippocampus by enzyme-linked immunosorbent, western blot, and immunofluorescence assays. Gagam-Palmultang ameliorated scopolamine-induced memory impairment in the Morris water maze test, producing a significant improvement in the mean time required to find the hidden platform. Treatment with Gagam-Palmultang reduced acetylcholinesterase activity and expression in the hippocampus induced by scopolamine. The diminished phosphorylated phosphatidylinositide 3-kinase (PI3K), extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK), cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB), and mature brain-derived neurotrophic factor (mBDNF) expressions caused by scopolamine administration were attenuated by treatment with Gagam-Palmultang. This treatment also promoted neuronal cell proliferation in the hippocampus. Gagam-Palmultang has beneficial effects against scopolamine-induced memory impairments, which are exerted via modulation of the cholinergic system as well as the PI3K and ERK/CREB/BDNF signaling pathway. Therefore, this multiherb formula may be a useful therapeutic agent for diseases associated with memory impairments.