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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2013, Article ID 823289, 6 pages
Research Article

Anxiolytic-Like Actions of Fatty Acids Identified in Human Amniotic Fluid

1Laboratorio de Neurofarmacología, Instituto de Neuroetología, Universidad Veracruzana, Avenue Dr. Luis Castelazo s/n Col. Industrial Las Ánimas, 91190 Xalapa, VER, Mexico
2Unidad Periférica Xalapa del Instituto de Investigaciones Biomédicas (UNAM), Xalapa, VER, Mexico

Received 19 February 2013; Accepted 11 April 2013

Academic Editors: R. T. Joffe and A. Spallone

Copyright © 2013 Rosa Isela García-Ríos 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.


Eight fatty acids (C12–C18) were previously identified in human amniotic fluid, colostrum, and milk in similar proportions but different amounts. Amniotic fluid is well known to be the natural environment for development in mammals. Interestingly, amniotic fluid and an artificial mixture of fatty acids contained in amniotic fluid produce similar anxiolytic-like actions in Wistar rats. We explored whether the lowest amount of fatty acids contained in amniotic fluid with respect to colostrum and milk produces such anxiolytic-like effects. Although a trend toward a dose-response effect was observed, only an amount of fatty acids that was similar to amniotic fluid fully mimicked the effect of diazepam (2 mg/kg, i.p.) in the defensive burying test, an action devoid of effects on locomotor activity and motor coordination. Our results confirm that the amount of fatty acids contained in amniotic fluid is sufficient to produce anxiolytic-like effects, suggesting similar actions during intrauterine development.