Background: Whether exercise could delay the cognitive function decline and structural
changes in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are not fully understood.
Methods: 6-month-old male APP/PS1 double transgenic mice ran four months and then the effects of
exercise on the cognitive function and the white matter of AD were investigated.
Results: The mean escape latency of the excercised group was significantly shortened when compared
to that of the sedentary group. The percentage of time in target quadrant and the target zone frequency of
the exercised group were significantly increased when compared to the sedentary group. The white matter
volume, the myelinated fiber volume and axon volume in the white matter of the exercised group
were significantly increased when compared to the sedentary group.
Conclusion: Exercise could improve the cognitive function in AD, and the effects of exercise on the
white matter of AD might be one of the structural bases for the protective effect of exercise on the cognitive
function of AD. The exercise-induced protection of the white matter in AD might be due to the
fact that the exercise prevented the demyelination of the myelinated fibers in the white matter of AD.